- The African Development Bank (AfDB) has said that although Nigeria produces 20 per cent of the world’s cassava, the country exports less than one per cent of its produce.
- The bank said Nigeria produced 53 million tons of cassava in 2013 valued at $16billion but exported cassava produce valued at $1 million.
- The bank’s Country Director in Nigeria, Dr. Ousmane Dore, who spoke in Abuja yesterday lamented that women got lesser returns despite contributing the more. According to him, Nigeria, being the largest producer of cassava globally would not mean anything if the country could not lift women out of poverty.
- “In Nigeria, women contribute close to 70 per cent of agricultural work force, but yet, get far less of the accruing returns”, he said.
- Five major constraints limit women’s productivity and full inclusion into the agricultural economy including lack of access to assets, lack of access to financing, limited training, gender –neutral government policy, and time constraints due to heavy domestic responsibilities.
- He spoke during the launch of a report titled: Economic Empowerment of African Women through Equitable Participation in Agricultural Value Chains carried out by the office of the Special Envoy on Gender (SEOG) and the Department for Agriculture and Agro-industry (OSAN) commissioned by the bank.
He said: “The study mentions Nigeria as Africa’s top producer of cassava with 53 million tons in 2013 – about 20 per cent of global cassava (approximately $16 billion in value), but only exported $1 million worth of cassava.