Government, FAO Sign Agreement
…To Support Rice Development, Marine Security
Agriculture Minister Dr. Mogana S. Flomo, Jr., has again called on all well-meaning Liberians, smallholder and household farmers that in order to feed ourselves, boost economic security and have job opportunity that will sustain the nation, Liberians should go back to the soil and grow up to 40, 000 metric tons of rice in 2019.
Dr. Flomo made the call on Wednesday April 10, 2019, at a signing ceremony of two Japanese-funded projects intended to promote - ‘Integrated Sustainable Rice System Development and ‘Support to implementation of the 2009 FAO Agreement on Port State Measures and the Voluntary Guideline for Securing Sustainable Small-scale Fisheries and Maritime Security in the Gulf of Guinea’ valued at US$750, 000 - between the Government of Liberia (GoL), and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) at the Ministry of Agriculture in Gardnersville.
The rice project, according to the release, is expected to strengthen the underdeveloped value chain, construct two post-harvest facilities with post-harvest technologies (rice mills, destoners, threshers, storage and drying slides) in two of the bread basket counties – Lofa and Bong, and will also improve farmers’ access to markets. It has a total investment of US$500,000 and will benefit 1000 farmers in one year.
It will be implemented through the MOA in partnership with Africa Rice and close collaboration with JICA and with technical support from FAO for the attainment of self-sufficiency 2019 – 2021 plan in rice production. Furthermore, the project is in line with the FAO-Liberia Country Programme framework, and close alignment with the Pro-poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development Pillar ll.
As for her part, FAO-Liberia Country Rep, Madam Mariatou Njie thanked the government of Japan for working to build food security, and sustainable use of natural resources. She said similar project will also be implemented in Sierra Leone for a period of 12 months. She however said to support integrated rice system development and port state measure in Liberia will open doors for investors in the sectors.
The 2009 FAO Agreement on Port State Measures and the Voluntary Guideline for Securing Sustainable Small-scale Fisheries and Maritime Security in the Gulf of Guinea with a US$250,000 implementation budget, was documented in the 2009 FAO Support Agreement for Implementation of Sustainable Small-scale Fisheries and Maritime Security. Mr. William Y. Boeh, Deputy Director General, National Fisheries and Aquaculture Authority signed on behalf of his entity.