The United States recently celebrated the success of its $244 million investment initiative to strengthen Nigeria’s agriculture sector and support small businesses. Over 18,000 Nigerian micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in seven states have benefited from the 5-year programme.
The U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Nigeria Agribusiness Investment Activity has mobilised more than NGN188 billion ($244 million) in agricultural investments. This has expanded access to financing and resources for Nigerian small businesses in aquaculture, cowpea, maize, rice, and soybean production.
Agriculture employs 35% of Nigeria’s workforce and accounts for a substantial part of its economy. However, high costs, limited financing, and regulatory barriers constrain the sector’s potential. The USAID programme aims to address these challenges.
According to USAID/Nigeria Economic Growth and Environment Office Director Michelle Corzine, “We have seen remarkable improvements in the agricultural sector, and it is essential that public and private-sector actors continue to collaborate to ensure that we continue to improve the business environment for Nigeria’s farmers.”
The initiative has ushered in a new era of growth and opportunity for Nigerian small businesses. With continued investment and support, the agriculture sector can drive economic development and entrepreneurship across the country.