#16bn spent annually on beans importation –FG

NEWS

 The Federal Government has said that Nigeria spends #16 billion yearly to import beans from neighboring countries, despite being the number one producer of beans in the world.

On Thursday, Mr. Bitrus Bako, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Science and Technology said that with the recent certification of environmental safety of genetically modified beans, the gap in production will be bridged.

Recently, the environmental release of pod bearer resistant beans in the country has been approved by the National Biosafety Management Agency.

“Prior to the release, cowpea (beans) production has been achieved only through extensive applications of pesticides aimed, in part, at battling the devastating bean pod borer. Farmers were forced to spend money on eight or more pesticide applications at each planting cycle. Yet, they still lose 80 per cent of their yields to the voracious insects.” Bako said.

He also claimed that the approval of genetically modified cotton would aid the revolution of both the agricultural and industrial sector.

Mr. Bako said that the reduction in the production of cotton in the country has had a negative effect on the textile industries which has resulted to the poor state of Nigeria’s cotton mills and other businesses.

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