Minister of Agriculture Robert Persaud on Friday congratulated the local office of the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agricul-ture (IICA) for its role here over the last year.
He was at the time speaking to officials at IICA’s annual accountability seminar held at the George-town Club, according to the Govern-ment Information Agency (GINA).
He said that the different inputs received, particularly the technical support provided by IICA had helped the sector to reach new heights.
“The fact that no limitation in terms of IICA’s ability to contribute to the vast pool of need that we have in our country, we still value that contribution and support; in fact we look forward for similar support and also much more relevant support. In the discussion that I’ve had with the new director general we have explored ideas how it is that IICA can be much more effective in terms of supporting the regional agricultural thrust but also supporting more efforts here in Guyana”, Persaud declared. Noting the agricultural diversification strategy, Persaud said that Guyana is also pursuing finalization of its national food and nutrition strategy which will delineate the long term framework for the new agricultural sector that it is building.
Persaud said that the country’s main agricultural activities have seen an upswing when compared to last year’s report.
“…we have seen sugar production on an increase. If you look at half year 2011, if you compare it with half year 2010, there was in increase by about 30% and for rice, 23.5% in terms of growth”, he said.
Ignatius Jean, IICA Representa-tive in Guyana, highlighted the technical Cooperation Agenda 2010 and Country Strategy, GINA said.
IICA spearheaded a secondary schools hydroponics competition, which was launched in 2007 among 15 schools with 150 participating students. Jean said this has grown in popularity and caused the Ministry of Education to expand the programme to 38 schools and 380 students in 2010.