IMF Warns Nigeria: Address Food Insecurity As Top Priority

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News in Brief:
– IMF urges Nigeria to prioritise food insecurity as an immediate policy priority due to 8% of its population facing hunger.
– While acknowledging the government’s challenges and recent efforts, the organisation also highlights concerns about low revenue mobilisation, which hinders success.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has urged the Nigerian government to prioritise tackling rising food insecurity, calling it the ‘immediate policy priority.’

Axel Schimmelpfennig, the IMF Mission Chief for Nigeria, made this known after a recent visit to the West African country. The statement comes amidst ongoing economic challenges plaguing the nation, including low growth, inflation, and external imbalances.

The financial organisation acknowledged the government’s difficult situation but highlighted the urgency of addressing the situation, with approximately 8% of Nigerians currently facing food insecurity.

The IMF praised some of the Tnubu-led administration’s recent efforts like the approval of a social protection system and the release of grains to curb inflation as well as subsidising seeds, fertiliser and other inputs to support farmers.

Additionally, it commended the introduction of dry-season farming initiatives. Recall that the federal government has set its sight on cultivating about 500,000 hectares of land to improve food security and self-sufficiency with support from state governments.

There are also recent improvements in revenue collection and oil production, the IMF said, but it highlighted concerns about Nigeria’s low revenue mobilisation. This hinders the government’s ability to address pressing issues like food insecurity and promote long-term development.

Overall, the IMF’s statement underscores the critical need for the Nigerian government to prioritise food security and implement effective solutions alongside its broader economic reform efforts.

Joseph Akahome
Joseph Akahome
Joseph O Akahome (OJ) is a writer, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Literature from the University of Benin. He is an avid agriculturist, with a bias for poultry and an insatiable appetite for chicken wings. When he is neither reading nor researching, he likes to spend recreational time playing board games, or swimming in serene forested lakes.


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