The Chinese government on Tuesday handed over the newly built Agricultural Technology Demonstration Center to the Federal Government of Nigeria.
Donated by the Chinese government and constructed by China Railway Bureau Group Limited (CRCC14), the centre is located in Ushafa, Bwari Area Council of Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
The facility which seeks to enhance agricultural productivity, food security and revenue generation through mechanization and technology is divided into a Power Center, Agro-input and machinery exhibition centre, agricultural technology training centre, agro-processing technology exhibition centre, research and service centre, demonstration farmland and dam.
Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, Cui Jianchun in his keynote address said the centre is a manifestation of China’s resolve to promote agricultural development in Nigeria through technology.
His words, “One of the priorities of the Chinese government in Nigeria is to develop agriculture and food security through the deal of technology.
“Through this demonstration centre, the Chinese government has supported Nigeria to develop modernized agriculture, through the deployment of machines, technology and high-yield seeds.
“Without agriculture, society cannot be stable and industries can’t function properly. Working together, both Nigeria and China can achieve significant growth in agricultural mechanization leading to the fourth industrial revolution.”
While commending the contractors for a job well done, the ambassador expressed optimism that the centre, will equip farmers with the tools to sell their products to a global market using mobile phones and technology.
Earlier in his welcome address, Mustapha Baba Shehuri, Minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development said the centre will train and equip local farmers with advanced technology to enhance productivity and migrate from small-scale to mechanized farming.
The minister who was represented by Udoh Daniel, acting permanent secretary in the ministry thanked the Chinese government for donating the centre and assured that the Nigerian government will use the facility to improve the agricultural sector.
Highlight of the event was the official handing over of the facility to the federal government delegation led by the ministry of agriculture and rural development.
The N2.8 billion centre which boasts of modern agricultural machinery and equipment will be managed by CGCOC Agricultural Development Limited through its subsidiary Green Agriculture West Limited (GAWAL).