The partnership agreement entered into between Sokoto government and various companies in the Henan Province of China will revolutionise the Nigerian state’s agricultural landscape for the long term benefit of the people, Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, has said.
Speaking after a meeting with Chinese investors at the Haofeng Machinery Manufacturing Company in Zhengzhou, Tambuwal said the story of Henan Province’s rise to the top of China’s food chain is a model which Sokoto hopes to emulate.
A statement issued in China by his spokesman, Malam Imam Imam, said like Henan, agriculture has traditionally been the pillar of Sokoto’s economy, with the state among Nigeria’s highest producers of wheat, corn, onions, tomato and rice.
“Henan is considered the breadbasket of China. Our target in Sokoto is that in the next 10 years, we want to become the most important state in Nigeria in terms of agriculture.
“We hope to standadise the production of important agricultural items such as beef, fish, maize and vegetable oil. Our vision to have the full agricultural value chain fully embedded thereby creating job opportunities for the citizens,” the Governor added.
He said visiting the Province has come at the right time considering the renewed relationship blossoming between Nigeria and China.
According to a memorandum of understanding earlier signed, China’s Henan companies will invest more millions of dollars in construction of a demonstration farm in Sokoto.
It also provides for experts from Sokoto and Henan Province to carry out joint analysis and study of climatic conditions, soil moisture status, crop cultivation techniques and plant protection and quarantine
The partnership will also promote lease investment and promotion of agricultural machinery between the two entities.
According to Tambuwal, Henan has seen rapid development in its economy over the past two decades, and its economy has expanded at an even faster rate than China’s national average.
“In the same vein, Sokoto has the potential to lead Nigeria’s agricultural revolution and we intend to be at the forefront,” he added.