The total value of agricultural import exceeded export by N503bn in the first three months of the year.
Statistics obtained from the National Bureau of Statistics showed that the total trade in agriculture was N757.4bn in the first quarter of the year.
The report put the export component at N127.2bn and the imports at N630.2bn in the period under review.
The report said, “The total value of trade in agricultural goods in Q1, 2021 stood at N757.4bn.
“The export component of this trade totalled N127.2bn while the import was valued at N630.2bn.”
This means that the value of imports exceeded the value of exports by 395.44 per cert.
The value of total trade in agricultural goods in Q4, 2020 stood at N588.2bn; while the export component was valued at N55.8bn and the import component at N532.4bn, the NBS report disclosed.
According to the report, top exported agricultural products were Sesamum seeds exported mainly to China (valued at N23.1bn), Japan (N8.3bn) and Turkey (N3bn).
This was followed by good fermented cocoa beans exported to the Netherlands (N9.2bn), Malaysia (N5.5bn) and the United States (N3.2bn).
Other major exports under this sector included cashew nuts in shell exported to Vietnam and India worth N5.3bn and N5.1bn respectively.
There was importation of durum wheat (not in seed) worth N66.97bn from Lithuania.
Durum wheat also came from Latvia (N41.51bn), Canada (N41.31bn) among others.
The report added that edible mixtures or preparation of animal worth N82.86bn was imported from Denmark.
Herrings (Clupea haregus, Clupea pallasii) was imported from Russia (N15.8bn) and Netherlands (N14bn).
The Chief Executive Officer, Institute of Credit Administration, Prof. Chris Onalo, said although the impact of coronavirus was felt in the agriculture sector, the impact of herdsmen attacks on farming communities was more on the sector.
He said, “What largely is held responsible is the impact of herdsmen attack on farmers. That has drastically affected returns from the agricultural sector. There has been palpable fear all around the country, especially the food production states.
“You can take Benue State for example which is the nation’s food basket; obviously, there was a dramatic fall in the production of food.
Food prices rise, NBS puts inflation at 17.93>#/strong###
“There is also a spill over to South-South states, tot to talk about the northern part of the country that hostility has remained unabated. People decamp from their villages to settle in different parts of the North with tremendous amount of fear.”
While saying things should not be allowed to continue in that way, Onalo said if care was not taken, this may not be the worst to happen.
“The moment the country cannot feed its citizens, then who else will?” he asked.
At the last Monetary Policy Committee meeting, the Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele, had also expressed the impact of insecurity on food production in the country.
Emefiele had said, “The committee noted the persisting security crisis, especially in major food producing regions of the country and the severe toll on food supply and prices.
“It noted that inflation had moderated marginally due to the unrelenting effort of the bank in supporting agriculture to boost food supply and prices.
“The committee, thus, re-iterated its call to the government to intensify effort towards addressing the security situation in the country to ease supply bottlenecks and bring down food prices.”
The NBS confirmed rising food prices in its inflation report released on Tuesday.
According to the report, Nigeria’s inflation rate dropped by 0.19 per cent to 17.93 per cent in May from 18.12 per cent in April. This was contained in the Consumer Price Index report of the NBS.
CPI measures inflation. According to the report, urban inflation rate increased by 18.51 per cent (year-on-year) while rural inflation rate increased by 17.36 per cent.
Composite food index rose by 22.28 per cent in May 2021 compared to 22.72 per cent in April 2021.
On a month-on-month basis, food sub-index increased by 1.05 per cent in May 2021, up by 0.06 per cent points from 0.99 per cent recorded in April 2021.
Increase in food index was caused by increases in prices of bread, cereals, milk, cheese, eggs, fish, soft drinks, coffee, tea and cocoa, fruits, meat, oils and fats and vegetables according to the NBS.
Core inflation or ‘all items less farm produce’’ which excludes the prices of volatile agricultural produce stood at 13.15 per cent in May 2021, up by 0.41 per cent when compared with 12.74 per cent recorded in April 2021.
On a month-on-month basis, the core sub-index increased by 1.24 per cent in May 2021. This was up by 0.25 per cent when compared with 0.99 per cent recorded in April 2021
The highest increases were recorded in prices of pharmaceutical products, garments, shoes and other footwear, hairdressing salons and personal grooming establishments, furniture and furnishing, carpet and other floor covering.
Others included motor cars, hospital services, fuels and lubricants for personal transport equipment, cleaning, repair and hire of clothing, other services in respect of personal transport equipment, gas, household textile and non-durable household goods.
In May, food inflation on a year-on-year basis was highest in Kogi (32.82 per cent), Kwara (26.02 per cent) and Enugu (25.43 per cent), while Akwa Ibom (20.06 per cent), Bauchi (18.65 per cent) and Abuja (16.91 per cent) recorded the slowest rise in year-on-year inflation.
On month-on-month basis, however, May food inflation was highest in Kogi (3.11 per cent), Ogun (2.89 per cent) and Anambra (2.37 per cent), while Edo, Sokoto and Ekiti recorded price deflation or negative inflation i.e., a general decrease in the general price level of food or a negative food inflation rate.
All items inflation on year-on-year basis was highest in Kogi (25.13 per cent), Bauchi (23.02 per cent) and Sokoto (20.11 per cent), while Katsina (15.69 per cent), Imo (15.52 per cent) and Delta (14.85 per cent) recorded the slowest rise in headline year-on-year inflation.
On month-on-month basis, however, all items inflation was highest in Kogi (2.22 per cent), Ogun (2.17 per cent) and Cross River (2.07 per cent), while Ekiti (0.02 per cent) recorded the slowest rise in headline month-on-month with River and Sokoto recording price deflation or negative inflation i.e. a general decrease in the general price level of food or a negative food inflation rate.
Nigerians now proudly use Made-in-Nigeria products – FG
On the other hand, the Secretary to the Government of the Federal, Boss Mustapha, on Tuesday said the intervention of the Federal Government in developing local industries had resulted in the growth of local businesses.
As a result of this, he said, Nigerians now proudly use products branded ‘Made – in – Nigeria’, adding that this would impact on the nation’s Gross Domestic Product, generation of employment opportunities and reduction in cost of production.
Mustapha spoke while delivering the keynote address at the opening of the exhibition of Made-in-Nigeria products in Abuja.
The exhibition was part of activities to mark Nigeria’s Diamond Jubilee.
He said, “The intervention of the Federal Government of Nigeria in developing local industries has resulted in a boom in the growth of local businesses.
“Local production of hitherto imported products is beginning to gain grounds that I make bold to say that the materials produced locally can compete favourably with the imported ones.
“Nigerians now proudly use products branded ‘Made – in – Nigeria’. This development will no doubt attract several benefits to the country including increase in its Gross Domestic Product, generation of employment opportunities and reduction in cost of production.”
He also said the government was beginning to show greater interest and provide more support for local production in order to encourage the growth of local industries, adding that it was part of the sector that was contributing about 10 per cent to the GDP.