Expectations are high as the EU is set to review the ban imposed on Nigerian Agricultural Products- Beans in June 2019.
Four years after the European Union imposed a ban on the exportation of Nigeria dried beans, the international body would, in June, review the ban.
The Director-General of the Nigerian Agricultural Quarantine Services (NAQS), Dr Vincent Isiegbe, however, has expressed concerns that the country is yet to put in place sufficient measures to prevent its products from being rejected at the international market.
Isiegbe, who disclosed this during a media workshop in Abuja, lamented that Nigerian agricultural products were still being rejected due to non-presence of NAQS officers to certify the food products at the sea ports before export.He said: “There used to be 13 agencies at the ports, but after the Federal Government reviewed it to enhance ease of doing business in the country, NAQS was one of the agencies that were asked to leave the seaport.”
He explained that EU imposed the ban on Nigerian dry beans in June 2015 and was expected to be back into the country to review the ban more than three years after. He said NAQS had been working to reduce the rejection of Nigerian agricultural products in foreign countries, adding that the inability of stakeholders across the value chain to meet the relevant sanitary and other requirements applicable in the destination countries was the most serious impediment to Nigeria’s participation in foreign trade.
Isiegbe said, “It is our goal to make Nigerian agricultural products acceptable everywhere in the world. That way, we will earn more foreign exchange from more destination countries.“Given the need to empower farmers, off-takers and exporters to comply with the standards of the export market, the agency is implementing a programme of backward integration for better export products.”