Agricultural Financing And Economic Growth In Nigeria

Project and Seminar Material for Agricultural Engineering AE

Agricultural Financing And Economic Growth In Nigeria


Abstract


This study is on agricultural financing and economic growth in Nigeria. The total population for the study is 200 staff of ministry of agriculture Uyo, Akwa Ibom state. The researcher used questionnaires as the instrument for the data collection. Descriptive Survey research design was adopted for this study. A total of 133 respondents made supervisors, agronomists, senior staff and junior staff were used for the study. The data collected were presented in tables and analyzed using simple percentages and frequencies


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the study

Finance for agricultural development has an increasing role in contemporary times. Finance affects economic growth, stagnation or even decline in any economic system. However, a growing concern has developed over time regarding the need for effective access to credit facilities for farming purposes. The Nigerian government recognizes that finance is an essential tool for promoting agricultural development because the agriculture sector is one of its main sources of sustainability. Access to finance for agriculture is an incentive for increasing the agricultural sector’s performance; it stimulates productive growth, and supports the survival of small and new enterprises. Access to finance increases the average inputs of labour and capital which has positive effects on production output. Irrespective of the benefits that can be derived from financing agriculture, there is an inherent risk of loan defaults amongst farmers, which discourages banks from lending to farmers. According to Beck and Demirguc-Kunt (2006), specific financing tools can be useful in facilitating greater access to finance. The government of Nigeria, being fully aware of the need for progressive policies, has introduced various initiatives and policies dating back to the 1970s to attract finance to enhance agriculture productions. Such policies have mainly been in the form of specialized agriculture lending, the supply of credit finance by the commercial banks in favour of the agriculture sector and through various programmes. While some of these efforts have failed, the operation of the remaining leaves one to wonder if they are actually achieving their intended objectives as rural poverty is on the increase and yet a large portion of the population is engaged in agricultural activities. The problem of access to finance for agriculture is not solely as a result of non availability of finance but it is caused by the reluctance of credit providers to give out loans without a certainty of recovering the loan. However, the banks are not to be blamed as they are not charity organizations who disburse money without recourse to repayment; rather they are in business to make profit from their lending operations. Unfortunately, the situation makes farmers a neglected group in the economy because they are not able to provide the adequate collateral needed to secure bank loans. Because of the challenges facing farmers, which have adverse effects on agricultural production, the government thought it fit to act as an intermediary through the Agricultural Credit Guarantee Scheme (ACGS) whereby the government stands as a guarantor for agricultural loans in order to mitigate the risk involved in agricultural financing. Agriculture contributes immensely to the Nigerian economy in many ways, namely; in the provision of food for the increasing population; supply of adequate raw materials to a growing industrial sector, a major source of employment generation, foreign exchange earnings; and provision of a market for the products of the industrial sector (Food Agricultural Organization, 2006). The agrarian sector has a strong rural base; hence, generation concern for agriculture and rural development. Support for agriculture is widely driven by both government and the public sector, which has established an institutional support in the form of agricultural research, extension, commodity marketing, input supply, and land use legislation to fast-track development of agriculture and rural economic empowerment. Central Bank of Nigeria (2010) asserts that over the years, the inability of this sector to expand and as well contribute meaningfully to the growth of Nigerian economy was due to inadequate financing to improve on the situation; that is, facilitating agricultural credit). Also, the problem of agricultural development in Nigeria indicates that efforts directed at achieving expanded economic base in the rural farmers were frustrated by the scarcity of, and restrictive access to loanable fund. One of the reasons for the decline in the contribution of agriculture to the economy is lack of formal credit policy and paucity of credit institutions which can assist farmers.

The role of financial capital as a factor of production to facilitate economic growth and development as well as the need to appropriately channel credit to rural areas for economic development of the poor rural farmers cannot be over emphasized. Credit is viewed as more than just another resource such as labour, land, equipment and raw materials (Rhaji, 2008). According to Shepherd (2002), credit determines access to all the resources on which farmers depend. Since banking cannot be separated from economic development, the banks (especially Deposit Money Banks) in the banking industry have been instrumental to various development schemes of Nigeria over the years. However, their performance in the facilitation of agricultural finance has not been adequately felt in the Nigerian economy; especially in the rural areas (farmers). Also, in line with Nigeria’s quest for development; the erratic nature of events within the banking industry vis-à-vis agricultural financing is a cause for concern. This uncertain nature of access to credit by farmers in the agricultural sector could result to total loss of confidence in banks by citizens in the sector, as well as growth impediment in the overall economy of Nigeria. Questions are been asked concerning the role of agricultural financing, its contribution to the attainment of agricultural growth and development. It is therefore pertinent to empirically analyze agricultural financing and its economic implication (impact) on Nigeria with the aim of identifying measures to tackle the existing challenges and rebuild the lost glory of the agricultural sector


1.2 Statement of the Problem

In Nigeria, agriculture remains the mainstay of the economy since it is the largest sector in terms of its share in employment (Philip, Nkonya, Pender and Oni 2009). In an effort to diversify her oil base economy, Nigeria is placing much emphasis on financing other sectors most especially agricultural sector, since agriculture has the potential to stimulate economic growth through provision of raw materials, food, jobs and increased financial stability. It follows that agriculture financing is one of the most important instruments of economic policy for Nigeria, in her effort to stimulate development in all directions. Finance is required by agricultural sector to purchase land, construct buildings, acquire machinery and equipment, hire labour, irrigation etc. In certain cases such loans may also be needed to purchase new and appropriate technologies. Not only can finance remove financial constraints, but it may also accelerate the adoption of new technologies.


1.3 Objective of the Study

The objectives of the study are;

  1. Ascertain the impact made by agricultural policies so far on the Nigerian economy
  2. Identify the constraints militating against the agricultural financing in Nigeria
  3. To ascertain the relationship between agricultural financing and Nigeria economic growth
  4. Examine whether the impact of agricultural financing have reflected on the growth and development of agricultural sector in Nigeria

1.4 Research Hypotheses

For the successful completion of the study, the following research hypotheses were formulated by the researcher;

  1. H0: there is no impact made by agricultural policies so far on the Nigerian economy.
    H1: there is impact made by agricultural policies so far on the Nigerian economy
  2. H02: there is no relationship between agricultural financing and Nigeria economic growth
    H2: there is relationship between agricultural financing and Nigeria economic growth

1.5 Significance of the Study

This study, which is primarily aimed at explaining agricultural financing and economic growth in Nigeria, will provide an insight into the problems associated with agricultural financing and Nigeria economic growth. This report would be of great benefit for agriculture sector and Nigeria, to expose them to benefit of financing agricultural sector for economic growth of the Nation. The findings will be useful for researchers to further generate knowledge in the field


1.6 Scope and Limitation of the Study

The scope of the study covers agricultural financing and economic growth in Nigeria. The researcher encounters some constrain which limited the scope of the study;

a) Availability of Research Material:

The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study

b) Time:

The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities and examinations with the study.

c) Organizational Privacy:

Limited Access to the selected auditing firm makes it difficult to get all the necessary and required information concerning the activities.


1.7 Definition of Terms

Agricultural Financing:

Agricultural finance refers to financial services ranging from short-, medium- and long-term loans, to leasing, to crop and livestock insurance, covering the entire agricultural value chain – input supply, production and distribution, wholesaling, processing and marketing

Economic Growth:

Economic growth is the increase in the inflation-adjusted market value of the goods and services produced by an economy over time. It is conventionally measured as the percent rate of increase in real gross domestic product, or real GDP.


1.8 Organization of the Study

This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows

  • Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), historical background, statement of problem, objectives of the study, research hypotheses, significance of the study, scope and limitation of the study, definition of terms and historical background of the study.
  • Chapter two highlights the theoretical framework on which the study is based, thus the review of related literature.
  • Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study.
  • Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.
  • Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study

Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

5.1 Introduction

It is important to ascertain that the objective of this study was agricultural financing and economic growth in Nigeria. In the preceding chapter, the relevant data collected for this study were presented, critically analyzed and appropriate interpretation given. In this chapter, certain recommendations made which in the opinion of the researcher will be of benefits in addressing the challenges of agricultural financing and economic growth in Nigeria.


5.2 Summary

This study was on agricultural financing and economic growth in Nigeria. Four objectives were raised which included: Ascertain the impact made by agricultural policies so far on the Nigerian economy, identify the constraints militating against the agricultural financing in Nigeria, to ascertain the relationship between agricultural financing and Nigeria economic growth, examine whether the impact of agricultural financing have reflected on the growth and development of agricultural sector in Nigeria. In line with these objectives, two research hypotheses were formulated and two null hypotheses were posited. The total population for the study is 200 staff of ministry of agriculture Uyo, Akwa Ibom state. The researcher used questionnaires as the instrument for the data collection. Descriptive Survey research design was adopted for this study. A total of 133 respondents made supervisors, agronomists, senior staff and junior staff were used for the study. The data collected were presented in tables and analyzed using simple percentages and frequencies


5.3 Conclusion

Agriculture financing is essential in development strategies in a variety of ways. It promotes agricultural investment and adoption of technology necessary to spur economic growth. It has been shown that most African countries (Nigeria inclusive) have inadequate levels of domestic savings, which could be directed to investment and insufficient export earnings required to import capital goods for investment. For the target rate of agriculture-led economic growth to be achieved there would have be external financing (either as foreign investment or foreign borrowing) to fill the gaps. To this end, the need to investigate impact of agriculture financing appears more imperative for economic growth in Nigeria. However, Expansion of capital investment and increase in productivity of agricultural investment should be more appropriately financed with domestic savings, foreign private loan, share capital, foreign direct investment and development stocks are among suggested recommendations for agriculture-led economic growth.


5.4 Recommendation

In view of empirical results of the study, it is recommended that: Government should maintain the credibility of macroeconomic policy that will make borrowing pro-investment in order create economic growth through such investments; Agriculture financing should be given paramount attention in policy formulation; Nigeria should encourage more international trade because gains from the trade contribute to economic growth; Nigeria should attract foreign investments that would be bolted down i.e. made in physical assets in the sector and not in such investment that can flee the economy Government presence in financing agricultural growth should be given great attention. And agricultural capital investment and agricultural import substitution policy should be pursued effectively; Expansion of capital investment and increase in productivity of agricultural investment should be more appropriately financed with domestic savings, foreign private loan, share capital, foreign direct investment and development stocks


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