World Bank Consultant Abel Ogunwale has canvassed increased support for rice farmers to boost harvest and incomes.
He said if the rice sector enjoys robust growth, the economy will develop significantly.
He also urged the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to improve the monitoring of its Anchor Borrowers Programme (ABP) to ensure the right farmers in the sector secure loans.
According to him, there was need to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the rice sector with financial resources to acquire inputs, among others.
He added that construction of rice and paddy machineries should be given special consideration for loans.
Apart from loans and finances, he said the government should support the modernisation of technology and market access.