Last update: 18-Dec-2013 7:04 am
Wednesday, December 18, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
You are here
Guyana minister: Not enough spent on Caribbean agriculture
GEORGETOWN—Guyana’s minister of agriculture Dr Leslie Ramsammy has criticised regional governments for falling short on promises of greater investment in agricultural research. Speaking at the opening of a regional media workshop to kick off Caribbean Week of Agriculture (CWA) activities here, Ramsammy pointed to the fact that less than 0.1 per cent of the region’s annual expenditure is devoted to research in the sector.
He cited lagging developments in the propagation of commercially-viable plant varieties and the search for alternatives to heavy reliance of harmful pesticides and fertilisers, the minister said research and development had “fallen behind.” Ramsammy said this exists even though Caribbean governments say they are in pursuit of a “hunger-free region of the world.”
He chided regional officials for slow development of a genetically-modified organism (GMO) policy and said though he would not state his personal view on the issue, such a policy was important if the region were to properly address climate change impacts on the sector.
Also speaking at the opening ceremony was knowledge management and communication programme manager of the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Development Thierry Doudet who said it was important that linkages between the media and the agriculture sector were developed. He said a regional “strategic framework” to improve media coverage of the sector also relied heavily on “capacity-building” in the media and the greater engagement of media owners in the process.
The workshop is covering developments in a number of areas including the hot pepper industry, climate change and its impact on fish stock and the incidence of invasive alien species and the threat to biodiversity.
User comments posted on this website are the sole views and opinions of the comment writer and are not representative of Guardian Media Limited or its staff. Guardian Media Limited accepts no liability and will not be held accountable for user comments.
Please help us keep out site clean from inappropriate comments by using the flag option.
Guardian Media Limited reserves the right to remove, to edit or to censor any comments. Any content which is considered unsuitable, unlawful or offensive, includes personal details, advertises or promotes products, services or websites or repeats previous comments will be removed.