By JEFFREY ELAPA
THE national government has allocated K22 million to the agriculture sector in the 2011 supplementary budget of almost K800 million handed down on Wednesday.
Minister for Finance and Treasury Don Polye said the government recognised the importance of the agriculture sector and its significant role in sustaining economic growth and development of Papua New Guinea, particularly for the rural population.
He said the majority of the people lived in rural areas as subsistence farmers and whose livelihood depended heavily on agriculture for food and income generation. He said the government recognised that in order to address some of PNG’s poor socio-economic indicators, it should allocate adequate funding for agriculture to address the
challenges which the government had allocated K22 million for it.
He said the specific allocations would include:
. Agriculture initiatives, K10 million;
. Air freight subsidy support for agricultural produce, K5 million;
. Counterpart funding for SADP, K3 million; and
. NARI drought preparedness programme, K4 million.
Minister for Agriculture Sir Puka Temu said the sector was an important one that was vital in improving the lives of the people. He said although there was much work to be done, the important thing was that the government had funded infrastructure, which was the link for communities that depended on agriculture to be able to transport their
Source: The National, September 23, 2011