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Nigeria: Heritage Bank seeks commodity exchange at Lagos-Kano Summit

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In a bid to boost agribusiness and commerce in Nigeria, Heritage Bank Plc says it wants the bilateral agreement signed between Lagos and Kano States to provide for a Commodity Exchange

. The two states had signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) yesterday at the Lagos-Kano Economic and Investment Summit held in Epe, Lagos recently.

The pact was at boosting commerce and agribusiness and consequently increasing the revenue generation by the states. Speaking at the event during the plenary session on: Growth & Investment Opportunities in Agribusiness – Value Chain Approach, Olugbenga Awe, Group Head, Agric Financing, Heritage Bank, according to a statement, said there was an urgent need for the establishment of a Commodity Exchange; stating that it would provide the platform necessary for the success of the MoU signed by the states.

Awe said if the Exchange was established, it would make future contracts between traders and speculators in both states and others more possible, thereby enhancing agribusiness in the country generally.

Specifically, he stated that the establishment of a Commodity Exchange would help to put the activities of grain farmers and others in Dawanau market, Kano; and others in spotlight. According to him, the volume of agribusiness and commerce going on daily in Dawanau market, which is the hub of grains and seeds trading across the world, needs to be complemented by appropriate policies.

Consequently, Awe advised the two states to ensure that the MoU they signed captures the establishment of a Commodity Exchange. Doing that, he stated, would make traceability possible for every produce traded on the floor of the exchange unlike now when grains sourced in Kano or Lagos could be sold and consumed in other part of the country without knowing its source.

Stopped He said: “Today, goods sourced at Dawanau are daily transported to Togo, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Niger, Ghana Central African Republic, South Africa, Libya and other African countries. Again, traders from Burma, Dubai, India, China, Britain, America, Saudi and other countries patronise the grains/ seeds market for items like Moringa seed and leaf, Sesame seed, Hibiscus flower (Sobo) and other items such as Soya beans, Beans, Cassava, Millet, and Guinea corn without any credit given to their farmers and Nigeria.”

Awe therefore said the Commodity Exchange would help to address issues like that, adding that it would also encourage farmers to put in more efforts in planting more grains.

Similarly, Dr. Sani Hussaini Sagagi, Deputy Country Director, Sasakwa Africa Association, Nigeria; said any country that wants to progress must take cognizance of its population structure when formulating policies.

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