• President Muhammadu Buhari has identified food security as the pressing priority of his administration, over and above export of food products.

    The President said this on Saturday while making comments during a Presidential Panel Round table on Investment and Growth Opportunities at the opening session of Africa 2016: Business for Africa, Egypt and the World Summit at Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt.

    Buhari stressed that the way out for Nigeria from the current slump in the global oil market, being an oil-dependent mono-economy with a teeming unemployed youth population, is for the administration to focus on agriculture and solid minerals development.

    “The land is there and we need machinery inputs, fertilizer and insecticides”, he said.

    Reiterating his opposition to the devaluation of the naira, Buhari said Nigeria could not compete with developed countries which produce to compete among themselves and could afford to devalue their local currencies.

    “Developed countries are competing among themselves and when they devalue they compete better, manufacture and export more.

    “But we are not competing and exporting but importing everything including toothpicks. So, why should we devalue our currency?” the President retorted.

    According to him, “we want to be more productive and self-sufficient in food and other basic things such as clothing. For our government, we like to encourage local production and efficiency.”

    The President of the African Development Bank (ADB), Akinwumi Adesina, in his message to the Summit, said: “Africa must think big, act big and develop big.”

    The Presidents of Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Sudan and the Prime Minister of Ethiopia also participated at the Round table.

    Before departing Egypt, Buhari and his Egyptian counterpart had a bilateral discussion on security, military cooperation, agriculture and solid minerals development. (NAN)


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