After meeting the president of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Akin Adesina, in Paris, France, the Bola Tinubu-led administration will begin processes to strengthen the Nigerian economy in the coming weeks.
Officials of the administration say plans are ongoing to ensure the following in the next few weeks.
1) Establish special agro-industrial processing zones across Nigeria
To increase household incomes, foster job creation in rural agricultural communities, especially for youth and women, and enhance food and nutritional security in Nigeria, officials say the Tinubu administration will set up special agro-processing zones in the country with the help of the AfDB.
AfDB and its partners are funding the program’s first phase, which covers seven states and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. The bank provides $210 million, while the Islamic Development Bank and the International Fund for Agricultural Development will contribute $310 million. The Nigerian government is investing $18.05 million in the program. Up to 19 more states have expressed interest in joining the program’s second phase.
2) Invest in massive wheat production
At approximately 2.5 million metric tons, Nigerian wheat production is not great for a country that prides itself as Africa’s giant. The Tinubu-led administration says this will change. The AfDB had earlier said the heat-tolerant wheat production technology it supports in Nigeria would help boost wheat production. The bank’s goal is to reduce the importation of the product by 40% by 2023 under its $1.5 billion Africa Emergency Food Production Facility.
3) Establish a youth entrepreneur bank
The AfDB says with the support of the Tinubu-led government, it intends to harness the power of youth through entrepreneurship and job creation in the country. Already, the bank has set up a trust fund that provides more than $7.3 million for youth jobs and skills in Africa. Approved proposals will receive grant funding to operationalize their activities, creating several new enterprises and an estimated 20,000 jobs for youth across the continent.
Tinubu’s administration officials say the move aligns with the president’s commitment to supporting youth-focused businesses nationwide to boost Nigeria’s economy.