1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Agriculture, in whatever form it comes or exists-food and cash crops production, livestock, poultry, animal husbandry, hunting and Horticulture-has its roles to play in any Nations Economic growth and devolvement is crucial. Among these roles are sources of food for the growing population, raw material for the manufacturing sector, reduction of inflationary pressure, earner of foreign exchange, empowerment of the labour force, source of income and savings for the farmer and improvement in their living standards, and market for products of the manufacturing sector. (Jhingan M.L 1975).
But, unfortunately for Nigeria as a developing Nation, these roles are hardly met by the Agricultural sector because of the internal and external factors facing farmers in Nigeria. A catalogue of reasons have been advanced for the relative poor performance of Nigeria’s agricultural sector. Key among these macroeconomic disequilibrium including interest and foreign exchange rate volatilities, poor infrastructure base, policy inconsistency and unnecessary intervention by the public sector which sends wrong (crowding out) signal to the private sector. (Eboh E.C, 2003).
Other important constraints include inadequate public agricultural expenditure, over dependence on crude oil revenue, rural-urban migration, inadequate processing and storage capacity, smallness of farm holdings, ageing population, use of inefficient traditional technology, inadequate agricultural extension services, policy inconsistency and increasing population pressure etc.
In an attempt to solve these problems of agricultural sector, the Federal and State governments of Nigeria intervene through some agricultural policies and programmes. Notable among the these policies are the operation field the Nation (OFN), the Green revolution (GR), land use degree, fertilizer company of Nigeria (NAFCON) and the National Agriculture land development authority (NALDA) and the latest is the agriculture development project (ADP). Meanwhile, these policies have not helped much in improving significantly the agricultural sector as the costs involved are still more than the benefits realized.
Perhaps, for the impact of public expenditure, surplus public agricultural expenditure allocation on the sector itself in Nigeria, is to be more effective, efficient workable and successful in some of these agricultural policies.
1.1 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The agricultural sector has been affected with numerous problems which has been the result of the poor performance of the sector itself.
This has attracted various strategies including expansion of public expenditure on agricultural activities. Overtime this expenditure has been on the increase without expressly translating to a corresponding expansion in agricultural output. The question that comes to mind are:
1. What is the impact of public agricultural expenditure on agricultural output in Nigeria?
2. What is the impact of public agricultural expenditure on economic growth in Nigeria?
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The overall objective of this study is to determine how public expenditure can improve agricultural output.
However, the specific objectives are as follows:
1. To determine the impact of public agricultural expenditure on agricultural output.
2. To determine the impact of public agricultural expenditure on economic growth.
1.4 HYPOTHESIS OF THE STUDY
The hypothesis tested in this study are as follows:
1. Public agricultural expenditure has no significant impact on agricultural output.
2. Public agricultural expenditure has no significant impact on economic growth.
1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
Once regarded as the mainstay of the economy and also the provider of employment, food and foreign exchange thus; adequate public agricultural expenditure on the agricultural sector is significant.
This study is intended to determine the trends of public agricultural expenditure on agricultural output in Nigeria in order to ensure food security to and reduce poverty in the economy.
This study will also show the impact of public agricultural expenditure on the economic growth of Nigeria over time. The result of the study will be of great benefit to the federal republic of Nigeria because economic growth is the vehicle of development. Development is the sustained elevation of an entire society and social activities towards a better and more human life.
The result of this study will be significant in the following ways:
1. It will help the Nigerian government and her policy makers to restore fiscal
Discipline in Nigeria.
2. The study will be important in debt management in Nigeria.
3. It will also have implications for formulating a workable model.
1.6 SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
This study covers the period of 1978-2007, a period of twenty-nine years; basically this research focuses on the trend of public agricultural expenditure and some contributions of agriculture to the economy itself (GDP).
The scope also comprises of some inherent problem facing the agricultural sector, its prospects and policy recommendation to attain a high level of productivity.
There is no end of knowledge and like( Anumudu C.N) will say; there is no failure anywhere only that people have just failed to succeed. In the bead of trying to succeed and failing to fail that this work become a success if not many factors without our ability to achieve a desired result some of which include the bottlenecks prevalent in the mobilization of data, which was a major concern to the essence of this work.
There is also lack of strong evidence in the theoretical framework of this topic that would have provided a reliable foundation for us to stem from a particularly Nigerian case. There is also the limitation of the small sample size which has its attended drawbacks.
The dearth of required statistics and limited access to literature, some journals and publications which could have been of immense help to this work were unavailable.
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