The Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG) applauds the Nigerian Government for signing the Plant Variety Protection (PVP) Bill into law on the 21st of May, 2021. It can be recalled that the Plant Variety Protection Bill was passed by the House of Representatives on the 17th of December 2020 and the Nigerian senate on the 3rd of March 2021, following several months of deliberation.
Through the National Assembly Business Environment Roundtable (NASSBER), the Partnership for Inclusive Agricultural Transformation in Africa (PIATA), together with AGRA, the Rockefeller Foundation, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and USAID, the NESG has been collaborating with the Nigeria Agricultural Seed Council (NASC) to support the enaction of legislation that will provide a plant variety protection system that will incentivize national and multinational agribusiness investments and aid the development of Nigeria’s Agriculture value chain.
The passage and implementation of the Plant Variety Protection bill will give Plant breeders intellectual property over a new plant variety, with exclusive rights to commercialize seed and/or propagation material of the variety. The PVP also promotes marketing of new varieties and allow breeders to earn back the considerable costs involved in the long process of variety development.
Furthermore, a well-functioning Plant Variety Protection (PVP) system will encourage in-country breeding activities; this will also attract foreign companies to introduce high quality improved varieties, knowing that others cannot easily copy their effort or take advantage of it.
Once the PVP Law is fully implemented in Nigeria, the country will move from generating $0 from seeds export to generating well over $2.0 billion from seeds export within the first 5 years.
While commending the National Assembly and the government for signing the PVP bill into law, we implore the government, the National Agricultural Seeds Council, the seeds sector, all players in the Food and Agriculture Seeds Ecosystem, Trade and Investment, Science and Digital innovation, sustainability and all stakeholders to ensure implementation guidelines are properly set and act speedily in ensuring that critical aspects of the bill are effectively implemented, as we believe that the measures set out in the PVP Act will create a more appropriate system that meets today’s realities, improve the business environment and general agricultural performance across the economy as a whole.
The NESG will continue to partner with stakeholders in the agricultural ecosystem and other sectors to improve the PVP Act and ensure it is beneficial to plant breeders, smallholder farmers and every stakeholder in the Nigerian Agricultural ecosystem.
Head, Corporate Communications,