• Tuesday, June 18, 2024
businessday logo

BusinessDay

Japanese Embassy, Sasakawa partner to drive agric growth

Japanese Embassy, Sasakawa partner to drive agric growth

The Embassy of Japan in Nigeria has partnered with Sasakawa Africa Association to help Nigeria transform its agricultural sector.

The two institutions made this known during a courtesy visit by Godwin Atser, the country director of SAA to the Embassy in Abuja recently.

The renewed commitment is aimed at tapping Japanese technologies including information and communication technologies (ICTs) for the improvement of farming systems in Nigeria.

While receiving the Atser, Ambassador Kazuyoshi Matsunaga appreciated the significant role played by SAA in Africa in general, and Nigeria inclusive.

The meeting was strategic as Nigeria is putting more emphasis on agriculture to lift its population out of poverty and create jobs and wealth.

Atser said agriculture holds a lot of potentials that is yet to be fully harnessed, noting that most improved technologies are yet to get to farmers because of a weak public extension architecture.

He noted that while SAA had done a lot in revamping the public extension system, more needs to be done, which underscored the need for more partnerships.

Read also: Nigeria’s agric investment hits lowest in 6yrs

He explained that to tackle the myriad problems confronting agriculture, SAA under the leadership of President Makoto Kitanaka rejigged the strategy of the organization with a focus on regenerative agriculture, nutrition-sensitive agriculture, market-oriented, and other crosscutting pillars including capacity building, e-extension and inclusion.

“Through this strategy, the SAA approach has become holistic and is responding to the new and emerging challenges including climate change and pests and diseases facing farmers in Africa,” he added.

The ambassador promised to support SAA activities in Nigeria, adding that the Internet penetration in Nigeria was an asset to be harnessed for agricultural development.

He noted that technologies in terms of agriculture mechanization could reduce drudgery, boost productivity, and improve the efficiency of farmers in Nigeria. He reiterated that there was a need for the private sector in Nigeria to work with Japanese companies and create the needed movement of technologies to both countries.