Invest in small-scale irrigated agriculture: A national assessment on potential to expand small-scale irrigation in Nigeria
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Nigeria is faced with the daunting challenge to improve performance of its agriculture sector. Currently, crop production in Nigeria is predominantly rainfed; irrigation is perceived as an important means to boost agricultural productivity in the country. We estimated the potential of expanding small-scale irrigation in Nigeria, considering both biophysical and economic constraints. Under baseline conditions, the land area in Nigeria with investment potential for small-scale irrigation is estimated to be 1 million ha in dry-season and 0.65 million ha in rainy season, respectively. Further sensitivity analyses show that the estimated potentially irrigable area depends on input parameters such as irrigation cost, fertilizer application rate and farmers' risk aversion coefficient. These results reveal not only substantial potential of investing in small-scale irrigation in Nigeria, but also financial risks in the investment and importance of linking irrigation investment decisions to agricultural policies beyond irrigation to create coordinated strategy for agricultural development. (C) 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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