The Gov’t injects $ 1.M into the Banana Recovery, Sustainability and Diversification Plan

 

The government of Dominica officially handed over EC$ 1,000,000.00 the first tranche of Phase One (1) of the Banana Recovery, Sustainability and Diversification Plan to the AID Bank, at the Financial Centre earlier today. Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Mr. Samuel Carrette said that the first tranche demonstrates Government’s commitment to the Banana Sub Sector and the Agricultural Sector, by extension.

 

While delivering brief remarks at the handing over ceremony, the Minister of Agriculture and Forestry, Honourable Matthew Walter said that the money will target banana producers who have remained in the industry and who will best utilize this form of support to increase production, and to meet the quality that is being demanded by Fairtrade and the regional markets.

 

‘The Ministry of Agriculture along with the Dominica Fairtrade Organization and Dapex formerly known as DBPL, has put together a technical team that will approve the assistance package for targeted farmers.’

 

According to Mr. Walter, the team will first convene sensitization meetings at the districts level to outline the processes involved in obtaining the funds.

 

He said that the Ministry of Agriculture is considering a more realistic Program, which should target 48 percent, that is the top 161 farmers who are actively producing above five (5) tones of acres per year and is increasing their acreage from 570 acres to 805 acres.

 

The Minister said that during the first year, they expect to rehabilitate 322 acres at $ 469,798.00 while they expect to replant approximately 322 acres at

$ 1,434,671.00 and expand 161 acres at $ 717,335.50, thereby investing a total of

$ 2.6 million dollars in the banana sub sector.

 

In conclusion Mr. Walter appealed to farmers to put these resources into good use, since it is only through improved competiveness and efficiency that they will maintain their presence in the UK market.

© 2012 SAT Telecommunications Ltd.

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