PARAMARIBO (de Ware Tijd) —Chinese investors have projected a palm oil industry in the District of Nickerie, just like in Marowijne and Para, legislator Rashied Doekhie tells de Ware Tijd. Talks are currently underway so Doekhie refuses to name the investors. The politician confirms positive tests for soil samples to test whether Nickerie is suited for oil palm cultivation, announcing a new mission by the Chinese in March when negotiations with the authorities will be resumed.
The US$1.5 million investment projects a refinery in the district.
The project will start with some 5,000 hectares which could later be expended. Farmers will get the opportunity to participate. They will grow they plants for the factory. “There is guaranteed sale of the produce.
The project will allow farmers to size their cultivation to their capacity.
After three years the plants will be ready for harvesting, and in the next 25 years all farmers have to do is just that,” Doekhie said.
The former district commissioner for Nickerie expects other agricultural sectors in Nickerie to be boosted, including the Staatsolie bio fuel project and the cassava project for export to Barbados. Doekhie points out that Nickerie has ample potential, but it needs the government to supply the facilities and the preconditions for investors and entrepreneurs. The district, however, is stained by its social problem, suicides.
The politician advocates research to why the number of suicides in Nickerie exceeds cases in the rest of country.