With support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the German government has provided two million Euros for the implementation of the second phase of the Competitive African Rice Initiative in Nigeria.
The Program Director of CARI, Mr. Jean-Bernard Lalannehe, made this known on Wednesday. He said the second phase of the project, known as CARI-2, would be implemented in Kebbi, Kaduna and Jigawa states.
According to Lalannehe, the aim is to help smallholder farmers to increase their income. Also, it aims to provide their families and the country with high-quality rice.
CARI is a project of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development with financial support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. It has been launched in four African countries namely, Nigeria, Burkina Faso, Ghana, and Tanzania in 2013.
Lalannehe noted that the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development was implementing CARI-2. The project started in June 2018, and is expected to last till June 2021.
He explained that the project would focus on business linkages in the rice sector to ensure that the producers were well connected with the markets, processors, rice millers, aggravators and input dealers.
Quoting the Programme Director:
“The first phase of the project ended in 2015, and CARI 2 is being implemented in the three Nigerian states to achieve its objective through the use of the MAP.
“MAP is a concept that allows for regional initiative and policies to be harmonized while enforcing coordination amongst other actors in the rice value chain in different countries.”
Lalannehe further stressed that various strategies had been adopted to address low sale and production of rice across the country as the Multi-Action Partnership which is one of the strategies, will bring together active participants in the rice value chain to identify important cross-cutting issues to be addressed in the rice sector.
He added that this will result in possible solutions to problem areas, and what role the establishment of a MAP would play in achieving them.