…another milestone by Buhari administration, says Jigawa Gov.
As part of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration’s initiative to boost fertilizer production, Nigeria and Russia have signed an agreement on the supply of potash, a major raw material for the production of the commodity.
The agreement with Russia is another milestone in the life of the current administration, says Jigawa Governor and Chairman, Presidential Fertilizer Initiative, Mr Abubakar Badaru.
The Managing Director of the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, Mr Uche Orji, signed on behalf of the Nigerian Government at Presidential Villa, Abuja, while Mr Dmitry Konyeaev initialed it on behalf of the Russian company that will supply the product.
Persecondnews reports that the signing was witnessed by the Chief of Staff to the President, Mr Abba Kyari and the Russian Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Alexey Sherbashin.
“It is another milestone in President Buhari’s effort to increase farm production and to support farmers. As you all recall, President Putin of Russia hosted African leaders recently at a summit and our President was there.
“During one of the side meetings, President proposed the possibility of Nigeria buying Potash form a company in Russia and today we witnessed a culmination of that discussion, where Nigeria and Russia have signed an agreement on potash purchase by Nigeria,” he said.
Badaru said the move which had checked the excesses of middlemen, would further boost the supply and purchase of fertilizer at affordable rates by Nigerian farmers.
He said:“What we have just witnessed will help in stabilizing the price of NPK brand of fertilizer that we produce locally. The beauty of this deal is that it is a direct purchase, no commission agent and also because of the involvement of the two Presidents, the price is very competitive.’’
In his remarks, Orji, said so far over 19 million bags of fertilizer had been blended by Nigeria in the last two years.
“Between 2017 when the Presidential Fertilizer Initiative started and today, over 19 million bags of fertilizer have been blended by this programme at a price of N5, 500 and more importantly, we have revived some of the blending plants that were moribund.
“Today, as we approach the programme for 2020, 26 local blending plants, which include some of the old and new ones have joined the programme,” he said.
On the gains of the Presidential Fertilizer Initiative programme, he noted:“Through the programme, fertilizer has been freely available especially for NPL 20:10:10, since 2017-2019.
“We have had a very successful programme so far with over 19 million bags of the product blended and sold and this chapter of our engagement is a new phase in the whole programme.”
The Deputy Chairman of the Russian company that will supply the product, Uralchem, Mr Dmitry Konyaev, said his country was looking into ways of making the product available at competitive prices.
“We are bringing potash at a very competitive international price for Nigeria and we have to develop our cooperation on how to make the product more available and affordable for the farmers and make their lives better.”