Economic and Financial Review


Central Bank of Nigeria


Agriculture, Agricultural Growth, Development Strategy


In this paper, the author attempts a further exposition on the on-going debate on the feasibility of adoption of an export-led strategy of economic development which considers" Agriculture- first" as the engine of growth. The au~or strongly supports an agricultural-based development strategy because it is capable of generating mass employment, it is anti-poverty as well as being an hl.come redistribution programme. This strategy, he reasons, should be particularly appealing to countries with a heavy debt service burden since it is a foreign-exchange conserving programme given the lowerimporrrequirements of agricultural growth and itslinka,geeffectscompared with those of industry-led import substitution strategy. He traces the choice of an alternative strategy among most developing· countries to the fact that before independence, the economies of most of them were closely integrated with those of the colonizing countries. Thus at independence, the desire to radically break away from tli.e past "led perhaps inevitably to an _industrialisation strategy based, at least initially, on import substitution". Consumer goods industries had to cope with poor quality and high cost of raw material inputs making them uncompetitive in world markets. There were also problems of employment and underemployment and of income inequality owing to the low labour absorption in their domestic economies.

Author Bio

The author is an Assistant Economist in the Research Department, Central Bank of Nigeria

Publication Title

CBN Economic and Financial Review





Recommended Citation

Odey, L. I. (1991). Bautista, R.M. "Agricultural Growth as a Development Strategy." Economic Impact No. 66 PP. 24-28 1989. CBN Economic and Financial Review, 29(4), 316-317.



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