FAO in Nigeria

Lagos state and FAO sign agreement to boost coconut value chain development

Honorable Commissioner of Agriculture and natural Resources, lagos state Ms. Abisola Olusanya and the FAO Representative in Nigeria Fred Kafeero signing the agreement in Lagos

Abuja - On Friday October 12, 2021 the Lagos State Government and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) signed an agreement for joint collaboration to develop the coconut value chain, through accelerated production, processing, commercialization and utilization.

The signing ceremony was held in Lagos between the State’s Commissioner of the Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Ms. Abisola Olusanya and FAO Representative in Nigeria and to the Economic Community of West African States, Fred Kafeero.

The signing signaled the initial inception phase for updating the Value Chain Analysis (VCA) in order to design an effective action plan that will identify the necessary public and private investments, technical assistance, and policy implications for sustainable value chain development.

Under the agreement, Lagos State Government is going to co-finance the initial phase of the project by providing USD 150 000 for the purpose whereas FAO will provide USD 50 000 through its Technical Cooperation Programme (TCP) facility.

Speaking immediately after the signing event, Hon. Olusanya described the agreement as a demonstration of the State leadership’s commitment in restoring the glory of the coconut economy.

“The partnership agreement we are signing here today will surely unleash the economic, environmental and nutritional potentials in the state’s coconut value chain by promoting sustainable production, processing, utilization and commercialization,” she said.

According to her, this will restore the pre-eminence of coconut as the foremost cash crop economy in Lagos state. “The journey we are starting today, aimed at increasing productivity, speaks directly to our future goal and benefits in the coconut value chain in terms of employment and wealth creation, enhancement of our environment by mitigating the impact of climate change and contribution to GDP, she added.  

Hon. Olusanya explained that the state’s 5-Year Agricultural Roadmap eloquently elucidates about investment opportunities in the coconut value chain in which a total of ten (10) million productive trees are proposed for the coming five (5) years with a projection of 800 000 000 husked nuts worth Naira 120billion.

“This could be tripled to Naira 360 billion worth of transaction volume with value addition and will further ensure Lagos state contributes significantly to making Nigeria among the top ten world coconut producing country, thus moving up from the present nineteenth position,” Hon. Olusanya pointed out.

On his side, Mr. Kafeero described the step as a start of a long journey of ensuring sustainable food security, nutrition and economic development in terms of revenue generation, improving the standard of living and local economy of the people in the state.

“The coconut value chain analysis will give us a comprehensive picture of the real situation on the ground that will help us to develop a strategy and implementation plan that will take us to where we want to be in the next ten years,” he disclosed.

Mr. Kafeero seized the opportunity to commend the Lagos state for being the first state in Nigeria to create a unilateral trust fund, calling upon other states to take advantage of FAO’s technical support in agricultural sector development.

He said that FAO was committed to working with the Lagos State Government for the development of the value chain, adding that it had agreed to provide technical assistance by exposing the state to happenings in other countries about coconut value chain.

In attendance also were the Ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Hakeem Oduyinka Adeniji, the General Manager of the Lagos State Coconut Development Agency(LASCODA), Dapo Olakulehin, FAO’s Programme Officer, Adeola Akinrinlola, among others.

Since November 2020, FAO technical experts have been engaging with the Lagos State officials under the Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources in particular LASCODA together with the Ministry of Budget and Planning to explore areas of collaboration in sustainable coconut value chain development.

In order to be able to successfully achieve the objective of the coconut value chain analysis, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) has also been invited to be part of the project in recognition of its professional capacity and knowledge on agroindustry development and innovation.

For more details Comtact:

Emmanuel Kihaule                                      David Tsokar                               Opeyemi Olagunju

Communications Specialist                          Communications Specialist            Communications/Reporting Officer 

FAO Nigeria                                                FAO Nigeria                                 FAO Nigeria – North East Sub Office

[email protected]                     [email protected]                 [email protected]