The federal government through the ministry of agriculture has disclosed plans to commence local production of tractor, this is aimed to drive optimal food production in the country.
Abubakar Kyari, the minister of Agriculture stated this in Abuja on Friday while receiving a delegation from John Deere, led by its vice president, Jason Braintley.
According to the minister, when produced, government would not off-take the tractors but provide the enabling environment to make the tractors available to farmers at low-interest rate.
“Production of 2,000 tractors in-country yearly would enhance food production, create jobs for Nigerian farmers, especially women and youth as well as achieving food and nutrition security in the country.
“There is need for farmers to form clusters or co-operatives to ensure that they have access to mechanization and pay instalmentally within a few years,” he said.
In his remarks, Aliyu Abudullahi, minister of state for Agriculture and Food Security, stressed the need to evaluate existing co-operatives and ascertain those that require support to enable them access the tractors when available. He also emphasized the importance of identifying crops most suitable for mechanization.
For Jason Braintley, vice president of John Deere, the company was exploring the feasibility of hiring, acquisition and production of tractors in addition to after-sales services, supply of genuine spare parts and training of operators and mechanics.
He hinted that the capacity of the tractors being considered would range between 75 and 90 horse-power for use in different terrains in the country.