Kwara, FCMB Promote Responsible, Inclusive Agricultural Investments

Oluchi Chibuzor

The Government of Kwara State has partnered with First City Monument Bank (FCMB) to enhance the ease of doing business across the state under the World Bank-funded State Action on Business Enabling Reforms (SABER) programme. The SABER programme will foster public-private partnerships, investments, improved land and tax administration, and infrastructure development.

To ensure successful implementation, the Kwara State Government and FCMB jointly organised a workshop in Ilorin recently, focusing on the Framework for Responsible and Inclusive Land-Intensive Agricultural Investments (FRILIA). The workshop, attended by government officials, farmers, community leaders, and agribusiness stakeholders, addressed the social and environmental aspects of land allocation, promoting climate-smart farming practices and protecting the ecosystem in line with global best practices.

Kwara State Commissioner for Finance, Mrs. Hauwa Nuru, described the adoption of SABER and FRILIA as another significant milestone for the state, highlighting the commitment of Gov. AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq’s administration to sustainable development.

Nuru stated: “Our goal is to improve agricultural practices by elevating land-intensive agricultural investments in Kwara State to international standards, ensuring long-term benefits for future generations. We will explore the framework, including strategies for valuation, resettlement, compensation, community needs, food security, successful models, regulatory frameworks, and support mechanisms. Leveraging our extensive land resources, we are committed to driving sustainable economic development.”

Managing Director and CEO of First City Monument Bank, Mrs. Yemisi Edun, reaffirmed the bank’s commitment to fostering inclusive and sustainable growth in communities across Nigeria by building a supportive ecosystem that connects people, capital and markets.

She said: “The SABER fund and FRILIA will promote harmony, attract investment to Kwara State, create jobs and wealth, reduce rural-urban migration, and ensure prosperity for individuals, communities, and the nation. We commend the State Government for progressing in advancing reforms and for meeting the stringent criteria set by the World Bank and the Federal Government to benefit from the fund.”

Dr. Paul Adepelumi, a World Bank Technical Advisor, explained that the FRILIA framework, a key component of SABER, ensures that land acquisition and resettlement for large-scale agribusiness investments align with international best practices.

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