Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Alhaji Sabo Nanono, has assuaged fears that the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic would lead to the scarcity of fertiliser nationwide.
Nanono assured farmers that in as much as fertiliser importation will be adversely affected by the pandemic, there is still enough supply of locally produced fertilisers. According to him, the fertilisers are products of local industries from across the country.
AgroNigeria had reported the establishment of Dangote Fertiliser Plant, which is said to be the largest in Africa and the world. Allaying fears over scarcity, Nanono said, “There is no doubt that the coronavirus disease will impact import and export of goods and services.
“We import some essential items like agricultural equipment, consumables like milk and wheat as well as inputs like chemicals and fertilisers and they will definitely be affected in this regard. In terms of fertiliser, there are companies in some parts of the country and more are coming up.
“For instance, we have two factories in Kaduna, some in Lagos and a host of other states and we can use those ones as substitute for the time being. We have Notore and it is producing very good fertiliser. We have Indorama and now Dangote is going to commission its fertiliser company.” So with all these, we will not be in a very dire situation in terms of fertiliser. It may be a bit expensive but I think we should be able to manage it,” he added.
The minister also said that the government would continue to subsidise fertilisers, in order to reduce the impact of the perceived price hike on the farmers. He noted that Nigeria will focus on boosting fertiliser supply through local production, amid the global pandemic.