By Onomiguren Agbamu
The Federal Government, through the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, with the Delta state government, has said plans are in top gear to eradicate poverty across the country through cassava Bio-Ethanol.
The Federal government stated this in a two-day South-south regional awareness and sensitization workshop on bio-economy, employment, and inclusive growth using the Cassava-bioethanol value chain development programme pilot with chain project limited, theme” Knowledge transfer: Cassava and Bio-Ethanol Value Chain” fin Asaba, Delta state capital.
In his keynote address by the permanent secretary, federal Ministry of Finance, budget, and National Planning (budget and National planning arm) Engr. Nebeolisa Anako who was ably represented by Mrs. Elizabeth Egharevba, director, of the economy growth arm, noted that the Sensitization workshop is Strategic Implementation of the Bio-ethanol Project, adding that it is one of the aspirations of the Federal Government is to bring about higher GDP growth and to significantly reduce unemployment by creating meaningful opportunities for the youth.
She disclosed that “the Bio-economy Policy is aims at promoting sustainable economic growth and development by creating a Bio-based economy that will contribute to the job creation, poverty reduction, and increased access to food and energy.
She revealed that the federal government will achieve the aim through the development of the cassava Bio-economy, as well as other Bio-resources
While appreciating stakeholders from relevant Federal Ministries, Department, and Agencies (MDAs) for their collaboration and enduring partnership in developing the Bio-economy Policy, which is a Ministerial deliverable that was captured in the National Development Plan (NDP) 2021 to 2025.
She said, “The framework will employ a Triple-Helix Knowledge Transfer Partnership In its implementation, saying it will include the Academia, Research and Development Institutes, Farmers, the Private Sector and Government HOAs as well as the Civil Society, Development Partners, and Development Finance Institutions”
She said, ” The country, at this time, needs an approach that will increase food production, youth employment, and increased growth through the provision of industrial feedstock and exportable products to boost our economy”
Adding, “To achieve this, one strategic pathway is to develop the Cassava Bio-ethanol Value Cham. This becomes even more imperative given the recent removal of subsidy on Petroleum products, and re-evaluation of the Naira through the merging of official and non-official exchange windows.
“Development of the Cassava Bio-ethanol value chain is a veritable pathway to assuage the economic impacts on citizens and for sustained development
She noted “Some objectives of the Cassava Bio-ethanol Value Chain is to demonstrate the efficacy of the private sector-led approach in promoting Investment in renewable Biomass, create wealth, provide jobs, reduce poverty, improve food security and nutrition as well as improve environmental management
She pointed out that “the intention of the sensitization workshop is to develop the modalities for the implementation of the Cassava Bio-ethanol project, as well as identify the key stakeholders required for the implementation of the entire value chain. It is also envisaged that this workshop will help to publicize this project to stakeholders for their buy-in and participation”.
Speaking at the event, Delta Governor, Rt. Hon. Sheriff Oborewori, who was represented by the permanent secretary, ministry of Agriculture, Dr. Ben Agamah said the workshop aimed at educating farmers and Nigerians on the importance of cassava.
He explained that transferring cassava and bioethanol has a value chain, saying if well applied and implemented it will create job opportunities.
The state governor noted that there was no need to waste cassava extracts if cassava could be used for other productions.
He said the state has put all mechanisms in place to harness the benefits derived from cassava through the Ministry of Agriculture.
The governor, however, called on Deltans to take advantage of investing in agriculture that it will go a long way to reducing poverty.
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