German international cooperation (GIC) has revealed plans to start new financing for agriculture in the amount of 3.5 million euros for small farmers by November 2018.
The GIC coordinator for the Green Innovation Center, Caroline Trimborne, who spoke about this in Abuja during a capacity building training for agricultural correspondents in Abuja, reported that the program will run for four years, and funds will be placed in commercial banks that are in the queue , will be paid to small farmers.
Trimborn, who did not disclose the interest rate, indicated that GIC will work with banks willing to lend to small farmers, adding that banks will have to develop criteria that farmers can meet.
Concerning the issue of collateral, she stated that she was concerned with the specific institutions with which she worked, stating that, for example, GIC was working with the Bank of Industry on a mechanization scheme.
She said that their goal was to improve the income and productivity of 200,000 small farmers growing rice, corn, Irish potatoes and cassava, adding that farmers in the provinces of Kano, Kaduna, Plateau, Benue, Nasarava, Crest River, Oyo and Ogun are involved in the project.
The program coordinator also explained that GIC is working with leading companies in value-added chains to improve their turnover and employment.
She added that the organization has trained about 150,000 small farmers and is carefully monitoring farmers in different value chains.
The organization, she added, improved the incomes of farmers, saying, for example, in potatoes, that it could double the productivity of farmers and increase their income along the value chain.
GIC collaborated with federal and state governments on capacity building, including extension agents, and said: "But we also work a lot with private sector organizations.
I think that in general, if you see a chain of value added, we have different plans for intervention. "
She stressed the need for farmers to view agriculture as a business, so that they do not increase production without seeing where the market is located.
"So, I think, it is here that the government is already watching, and we also consider this as important," she said.