Lagos State Government has disclosed its intention to hold the first International Coconut Summit which will explore, exhibit and evolve new ideas for sustainable development of the coconut value chain.
Special Adviser to the State Governor on Agriculture, Ms. Abisola Olusanya made the revelation during a press conference in Lagos today. She noted that the summit is in line with one of the objectives of Governor Sanwo-Olu to make Lagos a 21st Century economy as coconut, being a major cash crop of the State, has a critical role to play in economic growth.
Olusanya, who spoke through the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Dr. Olayiwole Onasanya explained that the Summit is expected to attract over 500 participants both from within and outside Nigeria.
“It is interesting to note that apart from captains of industry, investors, and researchers among others with interest in coconut value chain locally, individuals and organisations from South Korea, Malaysia, Indonesia, India, Philippines as well as other West African countries have shown interest in participating at the Summit,” Olusanya said.
According to her, the objectives of the Summit include the need to increase awareness and sensitisation on the economic potentials of the coconut value chain, providing a good platform for the stakeholders in the value chain to network, and attracting high networth investors into the coconut value chain.
She stated that a robust business session has been incorporated into the summit, stressing that topical coconut issues, an exhibition of products and technologies in the value chain as well as networking and interaction would also be featured at the gathering.
The Special Adviser said that some of the coconut groves would be rehabilitated, thereby resulting in an improvement of over half a million metric tons of coconut yield.
She hinted that over 180 products which can be derived from coconut are not being fully tapped, emphasising that the Summit will also showcase the economic potentials of coconut.