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Oil Palm Farmers Urged to take Advantage Of CBN Anchor Borrowers’ Programme

Farmers in Delta State have been advised to take advantage of the CBN Anchor Borrowers’ Programme to improve and increase their oil palm production in the State.

The Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Hon. Austin Chikezie gave the advice at the Town Hall meetings he held with oil palm farmers and intending oil palm farmers from the 25 Local Government Areas of the State.

Hon. Chikezie, addressing oil palm farmers and intending oil palm farmers in the various locations during the Town Hall meetings stated that Delta State Government had gone into partnership with, The Nigeria Incentive Based Risk-Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL), to anchor the oil palm farming programmes, on palm oil production and processing, the State Government would provide all logistics and do everything within its power to ensure the success of the programme in the State, as Delta State has a comparative advantage in oil palm farming.

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According to the Agriculture Commissioner, NIRSAL was the modalities for the Agricultural Development Programme (ADP), under the CBN Anchor Borrowers’ Programme, saying that oil palm was initially removed from the list of scheme under the CBN Anchor Borrowers’ Programme last year due to the long gestation period of oil palm production but has now been included with NIRSAL coming in to anchor it.

The Commissioner said that the awareness creation became necessary so as to inform oil palm farmers, especially those who registered under the CBN Anchor Borrowers’ Programme last year and intending farmers of the benefits they stand to get when they key-in into the new programme under NIRSAL.

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He revealed that the interest rate under the new programme remained the same nine percent (9%) and a moratorium of five years, saying that the amount of input that would be given to each farmer would depend on the size of each farmers farm.

Hon. Chikezie also informed the farmers that the State Government would soon embark on training programme for farmers so as to introduce them to new innovations and technology in oil palm farming, saying that the leading Nigeria Oil Palm Research Institute, NIFOR would certify the seedlings to be supplied.

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He stated that those who already had oil palm plantations would benefit from the programme as NIRSAL would give them maintenance such as fertilizer and other farm input for better oil palm yield.

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