Forestry, Fishery Earnings Low As Agric Sector Contributed N257.28trn To Nigeria’s Economy

Over the last seven years, Nigeria’s agricultural sector has contributed a total of N257,276,109,400,000 to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).


Data by the Nigeria Bureau of Statistics (NBS) from 2015 to 2022, revealed an upward slope in its annual contributions, specifically by its subsectors including crop production, livestock, forestry, and fishing.

Checks by THE WHISTLER showed that at the end of every fiscal year, the Agric sector under President Muhammadu Buhari in 2015 generated the sum of N11,829,466,270,000 in the third and fourth quarters (Q3 and Q4).

Also, the sector generated a total of N21,523,512,490,000 in 2016 and grew by 11.29 per cent to N23,952,554,210,000 in 2017 on a year-on-year basis.

By 2018, the sector remitted N27,371,295,760,000 to the GDP which is a 14.27 growth from the previous year.


It further increased by 16.56 per cent to N31,904,140,860,000 in 2019, and by 16.73 per cent to N37,241,609,150,000 in 2020.

In 2021 the amount increased by 10.43 per cent against the previous year to N41,126,057,510,000 and further rose by 16.70 per cent to generate the sum of N47,994,082,790,000 at the end of the 2022 fiscal year.

Although the Agriculture sector contributes to the nation’s annual GDP, analysis by THE WHISTLER revealed that three sub-sector out of four have suffered under Buhari’s administration.

Analysis within the period in view showed how crop production tops Agric earnings and other units including forestry, fishery, and livestock dragged.

Crop Production Unit


Checks by THE WHISTLER showed that the crop production sector contributed 83.66 per cent (N215,225,537,600,000) — The total amount generated in the years under review — The highest contribution to the annual GDP of the Agric sector.

The NBS revealed that the sector under President Muhammadu Buhari generated N10,537,348,090,000 in Q3 and Q4 of 2015, and subsequently increased in the following year with N18,883,081,500,000, 18 months into his leadership.

By 2017, the Agric sector witnessed an 11.72 per cent growth with a total of N21,096,105,250,000 on a year-on-year basis. By 2018, the sector rose by 14.75 per cent with a sum of N24,207,797,930,000 GDP.

The data further showed that by 2019, the sector expanded its annual GDP by 16.89 per cent after generating a sum of N28,296,926,970,000.

In 2020, the Agric sector grew to N33,177,538,150,000, a 17.25 per cent boost from the previous year, and in 2021, the sector recorded a mild increase of 9.56 per cent after hitting a total of N36,349,406,660,000.


In 2022, the sector’s annual GDP appreciated by 17.41 per cent after it realized the sum of N42,677,333,070,000.

Further breakdown by THE WHISTLER showed how the three sub-sectors performed in the last seven years.

Live Stock Unit

The unit generated 11.78 per cent of the Agric sector by realizing the sum of N30,310,298,820,000 in seven years, taking the lead in revenue generation after crop production.

Further analysis showed that in 2015 (Q3 and Q4) the sum of N926,107,070,000 was realized.

While in 2016, the unit witnessed a 15.27 per cent after it generated a total of N4,629,859,110,000. It then increased by 12.53 per cent in 2017 to N5,210,147,040,000.

It also rose by 10.64 per cent at N5,764,580,850,000 in 2018 and by 17.76 per cent to N6,788,601,660,000, in 2019.

During the Covid-19 era in 2020, the unit, however recorded a decline by 68.75 per cent when it generated N2,121,370,730,000.

In 2022, the livestock unit regained it growth by 6.03 per cent when it generated N2,249,339,040,000. It further rose to N2,620,293,320,000 in 2022, at 16.49 per cent.

Fishery Unit

From 2015 (Q3) to 2022 (Q4), the unit realized generated a total number of N9,622,888,800,000 — Contribution 3.74 per cent to the overall GDP of the sector, and it to the third revenue generator for the Agriculture Sector.

In 2015, the unit realized N229,342,000,000 and increased by 5.49 per cent to N528,392,660,000 in 2016, during the nation’s first-ever recession period.

The unit also recorded an increase by 18.24 per cent to N624,791,740,000 in 2017, and continued to grow in 2018 by 34.78 per cent when it generated a total of N842,105,030,000.

By 2019, it realized the sum of N1,212,390,200,000 at 43.97, and during the COVID era, the unit activities yielded 36.75 per cent to N1,657,910,450,000.

It further rose by 34.52 per cent in 2021 after generating the sum of N2,230,355,870,000.

At the end of the 2022 fiscal year, the sum of N2,297,600,850,000 was generated by the unit to the Agric sector, this showed a percentage increase of 3.01 per cent on a year-on-year basis.

Forestry Unit

Analysis by THE WHISTLER showed that the unit contributed least to the Agric sector after data revealed it remitted the sum of N2,117,384,170,000 at 0.82 per cent within the period under review.

A breakdown of the NBS report showed that in Q3 and Q4 2015, the sector realized the sum of N134,669,110,000.

However, in 2016, the unit generated a total of N236,254,980,000, which increased on a year-on-year basis by 8.87 per cent to N257,209,460,000 in 2017.

In 2018, the sector further rose by 6.06 per cent against to N272,790,640,000 and subsequently increased by 4.80 per cent to N285,879,820,000 in 2019.

At the end of the COVID year, the sector dropped by 0.38 per cent to N284,789,820,000 in 2020 and later increased by 4.97 per cent to N298,955,940,000 in 2021.

It grew by 17.69 per cent after generating the sum of N348,835,550,000 at the end of the 2022 fiscal year.

Expert’s View

Reacting to the data, Muda Yusuf an economic expert said the agriculture sector may have contributed to the nation’s economy, but it was imperative to replicate the strategies used in the crop production unit in others.

Yusuf, the founder of the Centre for the Promotion of Private Enterprise (CPPE), a financial organization explained to THE WHISTLER why the Crop production unit yielded more revenue to the Agric sector.

According to him, the government is more interested in the crop sector following its versatility and strength in revenue creation.

Muda Yusuf, Chief Executive Officer, Centre for the Promotion of Private Enterprise (CPPE).
Muda Yusuf, Chief Executive Officer, Centre for the Promotion of Private Enterprise (CPPE)

“The government focuses so much investment on the crop sector because of its versatility, which already is affecting the other subsectors.

“The fishery, livestock, and forestry could do well if more financial programs are designed to boost growth and make these accessible with ease for these sectors.

“Despite the growth of the crop sector, Nigeria’s production chain is poor, when you check the international market packaging of the country product, marketing is not encouraging. This I believe is also affecting the sector,” Yusuf noted.

He urged the incoming administration to leverage all subsectors, given their capacity to create jobs while creating beneficial programs for all sectors to advance on digital/mechanized Agricultural systems.

The CPPE boss recommended that the government address other aspects such as problems related to government-affiliated loan programs for farmers, marketing, Digitalization, and Product Packaging that have remained a hindrance to the sector’s growth.

Yusuf said “The existing Anchor Borrowers Program (ABP) had its flaws, as most farmers complained that they are not beneficial of the process, this could be managed and controlled efficiently if the sector has responsive data records of farmers.

“The new administration should carry the youth along by modernizing the Agric system just like the ICT space because no young person will want to carry hoes and cutlasses to the farm now with the way everything is digitalized” He added.


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