Cross River Chicken Factory, A National Pride – Reps Committee, CBN

House of Representatives Committee on Agriculture Production and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) have described Cross River’s Chicken Processing Factory (Calachika) as a source of national pride.

The committee therefore, pledged to enact relevant laws to strengthen its capacity.

Cross River Chicken Factory, A National Pride

The 24000 birds per day chicken processing factory is one of the numerous agro-based industries established by the government of Professor Ben Ayade across the state.

The Chairman of the Committee, Hon. Muntari Dandustse and the Special Adviser to CBN Governor on Development Finance, Anthony Ifechukwu made this assertion during a tour of the facility situated at the Industrial Park in Calabar.

According to Hon. Dandustse, the Chicken Processing Factory was in sync with President Muhammed Buhari’s policy on Agricultural production “which greatly encourages this type of programme under the CBN. This is why we banned the importation of frozen foods.”

He urged other state governors to emulate Ayade’s strides in agro-industrialization.

His words: “This factory here is a giant stride by His Excellency, the Governor of Cross River and we hope to back it by law so that we will have a successful atmosphere whereby it will encourage this facility to have a backward integration for the economy.

“We encourage all the governors of the 36 states to emulate what Ayade is doing.”

Ifechukwu on his part said he was going back to Abuja to share the success story of the Chicken factory with the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele.

According to him, “this factory for me is a milestone that we should come out to celebrate and thank the Governor for his vision.

“I’m going back to tell the CBN Governor that this program has started in Cross River and we need to do much more.”

The CBN representative disclosed that as part of its intervention, the apex bank “is currently financing 400 farmers to produce broilers for this program but I see us extending the numbers to say maybe 2000 farmers which will produce the number of birds to feed this factory.

“We will work with the state government to ensure that other basic raw materials in the poultry value chain are produced”, he added

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You are a selfless leader, Asuquo Ekpenyong Eulogises Obong of Calabar

Asuquo Ekpenyong Jr has described The Obong of Calabar, HRM Edidem Ekpo Okon Abasi Otu V, the grand patriarch of Efik Kingdom, as a selfless leader on his 2021 Utomo Obong Celebration. The event took place at Adiabo, Odukpani Local Government Area.

Speaking at the event, Ekpenyong Jr, who is also the State Commissioner for Finance, said that the king has impacted many lives positively in Cross River State.

“We are glad to remind you how important celebrating your heritage and crown is. For us at the Government level and Efik Professionals, your crown is one of the most cherished and adorned, and worthy of celebration every calendar year. We are always ecstatic to not only express our best wishes, but to also celebrate with you.

“When we think of you, we think of how you have positively impacted many lives in Efik Kingdom and Cross River State as a whole. And it is on this note that I and my lovely family express our profound gratitude for all your enviable successes.

“Today’s event is an opportunity for us to celebrate your majesty, as you’ve not only served as our royal father but a selfless leader.” We would like to take advantage of this special day to felicitate with you on your recent reappointment as Chancellor of Federal University Abeokuta. Unarguably. Your new feat is well-deserved and inspiring.

‘Hearty Congratulations, Amasi, May your days be long on the ancestral stool of our great fathers.”

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Youth Participation In AfCTA Is The Key Success Factor To The Trade Agreement — Asuquo Ekpenyong To African Leaders

As President Mohammadu Buhari traced Africa’s existing challenges to inability to domesticate production of most basic requirements and provision of jobs to the teeming and dynamic youth population, Cross River State’s Representative at the just concluded Intra Africa Trade Conference, Durban, Mr. Asuquo Ekpenyong, had called on African Leaders to urgently create a pathway for youths to thrive in building their country’s economy.   The event enabled representatives of government and corporate bodies to take advantage of investment opportunities, Mr Asuquo Ekpenyong who is Cross River State’s Commissioner for Finance, revealed that the Cross River State Governor, Sir Ben Ayade understands the critical need to ensure total integration of youths in the local economy.

“Having understood that one of the greatest challenges facing the country at the moments stems from the non-utilization of the youth factor in our economy, the Governor, has taken steps to adopt the simplest ways to utilise their high level of energy through engagement in the agricultural sector,” he explained.

The Commissioner opined that there’s a preponderance of subsistence farming in Africa today and in Nigeria in particular, it is only right that Governor Ayade chose to develop mechanized farming model to ensure efficient and effective output in the State.

He noted that there are several barriers that inhibit entry into Mechanized Farming such as the challenges of acquisition of large scale land, land preparation, acquisition of machinery/equipment, working capital etc.   “Therefore, what the Governor has done is to develop a 360 Degree Model to drive youth participation in mechanized farming. The administration intends to start by identifying young people in the State that are interested in agriculture, it thereafter will design a capacity building & skills acquisition programme to develop their skills and capabilities, the administration will proceed to acquire large parcels of land, as well as, develop/prepare them, demarcate and allocate them to beneficiaries of the training programs. These beneficiaries will also be provided with inputs and working capital. Under this 360 Model, the state ultimately intends to off-take the various produce and crops for processing in the state owned industries such as the Cocoa Processing Mill, The Rice Mill etc”, Ekpenyong reiterated.

The Commissioner posited that although preliminary processes have began and the program framework developed, the challenge to the program’s full implementation has been inadequate capital to facilitate the full program.

The Commissioner began the talk with statistics of the youth demographic, he stated that “On the continent today, there are approximately 541 Million people between the ages of 0 to 15 years, while a further estimated 455 Million people are between the ages of 16 to 35 years of age. This in effect means that for a continent of approximately 1.4 Billion people, people under the age of 35 account for over 70% of the population. This in effect means that the key success factor to the Trade Agreement is youth active participation and inclusion in the trade agreement”

He emphasized on the need to ensure there is a lot of sensitization about the trade agreements. He noted that if it wasn’t done during the formulation of policy there is a need for sensitization at the local level, at the grassroots level, in the rural & provincial towns, people need to know about this trade agreement.

“They need to be emotionally involved, actively involved; and just by the sheer providence of age and the logic of time, they have the greatest stake in this trade agreement because they have more active years of service and in commerce.”

“Now there are certain limitations in business that youths usually have. One is access to cheap capital. Most of the countries in Africa have weak infrastructure in terms of power, in terms of roads to provide logistics, water and other inputs required in production or commerce; says Ekpenyong.   He went further to disclose that there is a need for countries in Africa to deliberately set out to empower, to build capacity among the young people; provide access to capital; not just access to capital, but more importantly that they set up a framework that eliminates the issues of adverse selection and moral hazard thereby ensuring that the money gets to the right people who have sustainable ventures in which they intend to pursue.

Ekpenyong stated “If we do not do this efficiently and effectively, the truth is, what will end up happening is that, while the trade agreement maybe good, we may have a scenario where foreigners to the continents come into the continent, set up with as little foot print as possible on the continent, produce locally, trade unrestricted but repatriate the value out of the continent.”

The 2nd Intra-Africa Trade Fair held in Durban, South Africa, with over 5000 Conference delegates in attendance, 1100 exhibitors, including over 1000 buyers from over 55 countries who are engaged to grow trade and investment on the African continent.   Interestingly, too, President Buhari left memorable lines that under the African Continental Trade Agreement, Nigeria can double her intra-African Trade by 2030, reduce her reliance on imports and therefore, create more jobs on the continent.

Source

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Main Panel Session at the AfreximbankBank Intra-African Trade Conference, South Africa.

Brief Overview of IATF and the AfCFTA

The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) has identified intra-African trade as a critical factor for unlocking Africa’s economic potential. Although the share of intra-African trade as a percentage of total African trade has increased from 10% in 1995 to around 16% currently, it remains low compared to the levels in Europe (59%), Asia (51%), and North America (37%). One of the key reasons for the low level of intra-African trade is the lack of access to cross-border trade and market information.

Committed to transforming Africa, Afreximbank launched the biennial intra-African Trade Fair in 2018 as a unique platform to connect African buyers, sellers, and investors.

The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank), in collaboration with the African Union and AfCFTA Secretariat, brings you the 2nd Intra-African Trade Fair (IATF2021), to be hosted by the Government of the Republic of South Africa in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, from 15 – 21 November 2021.

Themed “Building Bridges for a Successful AfCFTA”, a strong focus will be placed on recognising growth opportunities for intra-African cross-border trade and investments.

IATF2021 will take place 15 to 21 November 2021 in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. IATF is an initiative that supports the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). It is organized by Afreximbank in collaboration with the African Union, marking an important step to sustainably addressing the gap in trade and market information for the successful realization of the AfCFTA objectives.

March 2018 marked the signing of the AfCFTA agreement by the majority of African countries. This agreement opened the way for increased intra-African trade, and also enhanced the continent’s appeal for prospective investors.

As a flagship project of the African Union Agenda 2063: The Africa We Want, the AfCFTA will bring together 55 African countries with a combined population of more than 1.2 billion people and a combined gross domestic product (GDP) exceeding US$2.5 trillion, making the continent the largest free trade area created since the formation of the World Trade Organization (WTO).

The IATF is, essentially, a gateway into the AfCFTA, heralding what will be the biggest free trade area in the world. What started out in 2018 with the inaugural IATF in Cairo, Egypt, has quickly grown into a resounding success. Trade and investment deals worth US$32 billion were concluded, and more than 1,000 exhibitors and 2,500 conference delegates from over 45 countries participated, resulting in an unprecedented platform for businesses to exponentially grow their interests through Africa.

EXCERPS OF THE HON. COMMISSIONER FOR FINANCE RESPONSE AT THE INTRA AFRICA TRADE FAIR 2021

Mr Asuquo Ekpenyong speaking at yesterday’s Main Panel Session at the AfreximbankBank Intra-African Trade Conference, South Africa.

QUESTION:

You identified the challenges in Cross River state. You mentioned issues around capacity; but as you now prepare your young people to trade with markets beyond Cross river state but a huge continent with a huge ability and potentials.

What will you be doing differently to ensure that those young businesses are in position to succeed?

RESPONSE:

The African Continental Trade Agreement has an objective which seeks to eliminate and reduce barriers; tariff and non-tariff barriers, to trade effectively among the 54 member countries and effectively creating one of the largest single market.

I started off with the statistics as to the Youth demography and in terms of the fact that they are the people, the key success factors for whether how successful the trade agreement will be.

What we need to do is to ensure there is a lot of sensitization about the trade agreement. If that wasn’t done during the formulation of policy.  If it was done, excellent, but if that wasn’t done comprehensively enough, there is a need for sensitization at the local level, at the grassroots level, in the rural, the provincial towns, people need to know about this trade agreement.

They need to be emotionally involved, actively involved; and just by the shared providence of age and the logic of time, they have the greatest stake in this trade agreement because they have more active years of service and in commerce and I will give all that to Youth demography and I will like to think that we would want to be actively involved.

Now there are certain limitations in business that youth usually have. One is access to cheap capital. Most of the countries in Africa have weak infrastructure in terms of power, in terms of roads to provide logistics, in terms of roads to provide logistics, water and other inputs required in production or commerce.

 

There is need for countries in Africa to deliberately set out to empower, to build capacity among the young people; provide access to capital; Not just access to capital, more importantly that they set up a framework that gets rid of adverse selection; the moral hazards of giving money to the wrong people and ensure that the money gets to the right people who have ventures in which they intend to pursue.

If we do not do this efficiently and effectively, the truth is, what will end up happening is that, while the trade agreement is good, we may have a scenario where foreigners to the continents come into the continent, set up with as little foot print as possible in the continent, produce locally, fare unrestricted but repatriate the value out of the continent.

So there is need for the young people to be champions of AfCFTA and that started drastically by sensitization, building capacity and providing access to capital.

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Signs likeness for may

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Greater open after grass

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Created lights whose days

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