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Contribution of Agriculture to Economic Growth in Nigeria

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Agriculture was at the forefront of the Nigerian economy pre and post independence and contributed in no small measure in the provision of food, raw materials for industry and provided unprecedented employment opportunities among others. These have dwindled considerably from the early 70’s and still dwindling further unto this day following the discovery of oil.

Diverse Strategic reforms have been deployed in the sub Saharan African countries to sustain capital inflow capable of enhancing agricultural output with a view of ensuring food security which apparently will translates into a robust economy. The Nigerian economy is no exception following series of policy emergence to stimulate capital inflow, since the internally generated revenue is weak and constrained in maintaining a sustainable agricultural output. This has necessitated the need to hinge on Foreign Capital inflow as an alternative source to fund agriculture, with the ultimate perception that it will act as a catalyst that will stimulate economic development and growth, thus resonating with Ansari (2004) that the impact of capital inflow in stimulating the national economy is the most reliable path to sustainability.

Chatterjee and Turnosky (2005) conceptualize foreign capital inflow as representing Salient Avenue by which wealth is channeled from developed to developing nations. Okpanachi (2012) unveils that prior to the years 2000s; there were two basic sources of Capital inflows in Nigeria vis Foreign direct investment and debt, however it took a different toll following the emergence of proliferation of Capital market which stimulated the inflow in the form of portfolio investment which commenced precisely in 2004.Nigeria has witnessed an amazing capital inflow in recent years Okpanachi (2012), Edu & Bassey (2015). According to Edu and Bassey (2015) “These impressive FDI inflows into the Nigerian economy notwithstanding, the Nigerian economy is still bedeviled with severe challenges such as increased poverty, low capacity utilization, declining output, rising unemployment rates, unstable power supply and decay in infrastructure among others”. The big question is how can sustainable agricultural output take place with the foreign capital inflow as a prerequisite? Policy in agriculture has been symbolized by enormous policy logging, instability and emergence of unintended consequences. Why after decades of humongous public sector investment, is the Nigerian agricultural output still low?

Obansa and Maduaekwe (2013) comment that typical of most African countries (Nigerian inclusive) is the paucity of domestic savings not available for investment, as well as constrained by insufficient export earnings available to import capital goods for investment and are devoid of revenue raising capacity to cover certain level of public investment, adding that filling these gaps would require external financing (either as foreign investment or foreign borrowing). This study will focus on Foreign Capital Inflow as it impacts on agricultural output in Nigeria. Calderón & Nguyen (2015) in their empirical analysis unveil the positive impact of contribution of Capital Inflow on economic growth, in line with this, Ansari (2004) opine that one of the paradigms enabling success of Capital flow is for the benefiting nation to create an enabling investment climate.

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