Guyana seeking India’s assistance to boost agriculture, agro-processing
Guyana is seeking assistance from India in the form of technology and skilled manpower in the agriculture and agro-processing industries, with the goal of becoming a leader in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).
His Excellency, Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali on Thursday discussed potential areas of cooperation with Union Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister of India, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar during a meeting in New Delhi, India.
President Ali said India can help Guyana establish climate-resistant and higher-yield seed production for crops like sugarcane and coconut. He said Guyana is open to joint venture mechanisms in the dairy sector to export dairy products and earn millions of dollars in foreign exchange.
He acknowledged the challenges facing Guyana’s agriculture sector, including a lack of technology and human resources, and sought assistance in the form of advanced irrigation techniques and irrigation pumps.
Following the discussions, it was agreed that a Memorandum of Understanding would be signed in one month, in which the Government of India would offer technical support and human resource skills and capacity building in the areas of coconut, rice, sugar and dairy.
Minister Tomar emphasised the potential for cooperation between India and Guyana, highlighting India’s extensive research and development system in agriculture. He also noted that India is committed to addressing the effects of climate change, particularly for low-lying states and small island developing states in the Caribbean.
India recently launched the National Innovations in Climate Resilient Agriculture Project, which aims to enhance farmers’ resilience through the implementation of climate-smart agriculture practices and the development of climate-resilient crop varieties. Additionally, India is promoting organic and natural farming on a large scale, and offered technical support to Guyana in the promotion of natural farming practices.
President Ali is in India on a seven-day official state visit where he participated in the Pradesh Government Global Investors Summit and held engagements with officials of the Government of India and agencies/ organisations of the Private Sector of India.