The Nigerian Government has launched a programme aimed at creating more employment for Nigerian Youths in the Agriculture sector.
The “Youth Employment In Agriculture Programme” (YEAP) was launched earlier today 16th Dec 2014 in Abuja by President Goodluck Jonathan.
President Jonathan said his administration would not relent in the execution of programmes that would engage the teeming Nigerian youths in profitable and viable economic activities especially in agriculture.
The government also launched a fund that would finance agriculture in Nigeria, creating an opportunity for young Nigerians and Youths to access finance for agricultural ventures which they desire to do.
“Nigerian youths will not just take agriculture as a way of life, they will run agriculture as a business.
“Nigerian youths have showcased Nigeria in positive light more than the politicians and Nigeria needs younger and more entrepreneurial commercial farmers, as the ageing population of farmers are posing challenges to the system,” President Jonathan said.
The Ministry of Agriculture has mapped out over $15 million investments, with the support of other world bodies like the German Development Bank, and the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority while the Federal Government has promised to create the enabling environment for the Nigerian youths to grab the opportunity.
The two programmes launched are targeted at reaching up to 750,000 Nigerian units over five years with financial support to enable them establish and run wealth creating agribusiness enterprises.
Nigeria is making efforts to diversify its economy that has depended hugely on revenues generated from sales of crude oil. The diversification of the economy has become a priority of the government at a time that the price of crude has continued to drop.
Prior to the discovery of crude in Nigeria, agriculture has been the mainstay of the economy of the nation, with large arable land left uncultivated.
Unemployment among youths has been identified as one of the biggest challenges facing Nigeria and for the President, time has come to create jobs and lay a new foundation for Nigeria’s economy to grow.