The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), has pledged it’s readiness to collaborate with the Ogun State Government towards boosting oil palm production.
Commissioner for Agriculture, Dr Adeola Odedina made this known during an inspection tour to Apoje Farm Settlement where an oil palm processing mill is located under the management of Agricultural Development Corporation, Apoje, Ijebu-North Local Government Area.
Odedina who revealed that the inspection was at the instance of the state Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, maintained that the state owned oil-palm mill, was established in 1958 and needed to be refurbished for maximum output.
The facility sited on 8,000 hectares of land required CBN intervention for proper maintenance to process palm oil in larger quantity.
He added that abandoned oil farms owned by individuals would be revived while interested oil should also leverage on CBN intervention scheme.
Odedina said, ”We are turning our searchlights to this facility, we are doing survey of potential areas of intervention by the CBN so that at the end of the day, we move up the ladder of oil production in the State because there are lots of applications for collaboration by private investors within and outside the country and there are lots of room for improvement.
” CBN is here to upgrade our state’s value-chain through this window of opportunity”, he said.
Also speaking, the Head, Development Finance, Central Bank of Nigeria, Abeokuta, Dr (Mrs) Oluyemisi Olukoya, said there was need to visit the two oil palm estates in the State in order to ensure surstainability for investment, expansion and rehabilitation in collaboration with the state government.
She added that oil palm as an essential commodity needed to be tapped into, hence the need for collaboration between the State government and CBN.
“Apoje is synonymous with oil Palm, we have been hearing of this place for quite a long time, we see that alot of investment have been put in place and we believe there is room for improvement because there is a lot of potential here.”
Facilities inspected include oil palm mill, Steriliser, Boiler, palm tree plantation as well as nursery farm areas.
Other dignitaries on the inspection tour include, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Dr Dotun Sorunke, the General Manager Ogun State Agricultural Development Corporation, Mr Femi Soremekun who conducted the team round the facilities.