Working week for the formulation of National rice development strategy (NRDS-2) for Nigeria
A. Background of the mission
Nigeria is one of the first group countries in the CARD phase 1 (2008-2018). The National Rice Development Strategy (NRDS) was transformed into the Rice Transformation Agenda- Action Plan (RTA-AP) for alignment with the government rice policy. Nigeria also developed the sub-sector strategies such as the seed and mechanization. The overall result showed a significant improvement in rice sector in Nigeria. The achievements recorded necessitated the Federal Government of Nigeria, represented by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD) to apply to CARD to be part of phase 2. Nigeria thus set the overall objective of ‘’Achieving rice self-sufficiency, import substitution and food security’’ within the period of CARD phase-2 (2019-2030). It is on the basis of the foregoing and based on request by the government that CARD is organizing a working week to help formulate a strategy, which will serve as a road map to develop the rice sector.
Nigeria Rice Taskforce members, NRDS Focal Point and CARD Consultant
B. Mission objective and Results.
A working week was held between the 8-12 July 2019 in the conference hall of hotel de Bentley Abuja comprising 15 experts from the different segment of the rice value chain, these experts were drawn from the public sector, research institutes, financial sector, commercial banks, bank of agriculture, extension services as well as development partners. The working week was jointly sponsored by JICA and the project coordinating unit (PCU) of World Bank Fadama 3 additional financing.
The WW comprises two segments, first was a breakout session for two day’s brainstorming, a comprehensive analysis of the sector was carried out to identify the gaps along the rice value chain with special focus on seed, production/mechanization, processing/marketing and financing (this is in response to the government vision for the sector). A value chain intervention element matrix which examined the current situation in the entire value chain was applied. The challenges/bottlenecks that may hinder attainment of the set objective of rice self-sufficiency and import substitution by 2030 were profiled. Concrete actions to be taken to overcoming the listed challenges were then proposed. Second segment was a plenary session to discuss and consolidate outputs from the group discussions.
ii. Key outputs/Results.
The task force members after exhaustive discussions proceeded to set the target for rice production in the NRDS-2 as follows:
Production/Consumption 2030 (Target)
· Production = 34,094,749MMT
· Milled rice = 20,456,849 MMT
· Consumption = 11,363,514.82MMT
Also target for seed that will be needed was also set
· Breeder seeds = 14.38Mt
· Foundation seeds = 1,917.83MT
· Certified seeds =255,710.62MT
Even though the targets might seem ambitious, however all the indices for achieving the objectives were carefully discussed, some of which include government massive investments in the processing using the PPP model, support to small and medium enterprises to own mills as well as conducive environment provided to big investors to establish integrated mills. The government Anchor Borrower Program (ABP), an initiative of the Central Bank of Nigeria is also playing a key role in empowering farmers to produce paddy, while processors are also supported to produce quality export grade milled rice.
C. Way forward
After the completion of the working week, the task force members set up a four man committee to consolidate the outputs and produce the zero. The zero draft will be shared among the agriculture donor working group (ADWG) and in-country steering committee (SC) members for their inputs. The document will then undergo internal clearance in the ministry of agriculture followed by a validation workshop and then ministerial approval, after which will become the official road map for the development of the rice sector in Nigeria.