With the successes recorded so far by Federal Government’s Agriculture Transformation Support Programme (phase 1) ATASP-1 in Nigeria in improving agriculture, about 40,000 youths are set to be trained in the various value chains and complete on-going social infrastructure projects in the country.
The Agriculture Transformation Support Programme, (phase 1) ATASP-1 is a five year project being implemented in 200 rural communities and 33 local governments’ areas in seven states of the federation namely Anambra, Enugu, Niger, Kano, Jigawa, Kebbi and Sokoto.
In an interactive session with the media in Abuja Nigeria’s capital the new National Programme Coordinator Ibrahim Arabi disclosed the forty thousand youth will be drawn from the states where the project is being implemented.
While reeling out the achievement of the project in the last four years, Mr Arabi said the project has contributed to food security, job and wealth creation by creating 299, 615 jobs and 209,464 metric tonnes of food valued at Thirty Six point two Billion Naira.
“About 299,615 jobs have been created compared with the target of 120,000; 209,464 MT of food, valued at NGN36.2 billion has been injected into the economy as against a target of 100,000MT; and the increase of income of farmers and entrepreneurs by 20.5% at Mid Term Review of (MTR) of the program gives confidence that the target of 25% increase in income for the program beneficiaries is achievable at the end of the program”
Arabi said the project has already empowered over twenty thousand farmers and processors including women and youth on Good Agronomic Practices and food processing across four zones in the country since its inception in 2015.
He noted that beneficiaries who adopted the technologies introduced by ATASP-1 hade their earning improved.
‘’Some of the beneficiaries who have adopted the technologies promoted by ATASP-1 have been able to acquire additional assets through enhancement of income”
He added that with the project’s interventions, the areas under cultivation of the three commodities increased from 68,000 hectare target to 73,506.71 hectares.
ATASP-1 is an Africa Development Bank (AFDB) funded project in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.