Investments in agriculture will advance value-added production, development

– Minister Mustapha

Minister of Agriculture, Zulfikar Mustapha, MP, has commissioned an agri-business development incubator, and handed over three ATVs and two refrigerated trucks to the Guyana Marketing Corporation (GMC). 

On Friday, the Minister said the investments in the agricultural sector will benefit farmers and the nation.

“Investments like these will enhance not only the development within the country, but will enhance our country’s position to take its rightful place in the region and the world at large.”

Minister of Agriculture, Zulfikar Mustapha MP

Minister Mustapha said the agricultural sector was neglected, resulting in Guyana still being a primary producer of products. To combat this, the Government would be investing more in order to provide the necessary facilities to produce value-added products and advance development.

“The aim of the Ministry of Agriculture, first of all, is to ensure that we have food security, but we can’t have food security alone if we don’t have the facilities to complement it.

“So, if we want … the country to lead the agriculture and agri food system in the Caribbean, then we have to invest in infrastructure…so that we can modernise and improve and develop the sector.”

Ceremonial opening of the agri-business development incubator

The Agriculture Ministeralso said Guyana will be transformed from subsistence farming as investments are made in the agro-processing sector.

“I want to see the local and small farmers also benefit. We must enhance their position in society because too many times …. the brunt of the problems are faced by the local farmers and the small farmers.”

Meanwhile,GMC’s General Manager, Ms. Teshawna Lall said the $26.4 million project will support GMC’s farmers with transportation and agro-processing.

“These investments will positively contribute towards the corporation’s improvements, both internally and externally, and further provide an enabling environment and improve capacities for its stakeholders.”

GMC’s General Manager, Ms. Teshawna Lall

Ms. Lall also said the GMC is committed to revamping its services to provide more and better support to its stakeholders.

The ATVs will be used in hinterland regions with earthen roads and scattered agriculture holdings. Meanwhile, the refrigerated trucks will allow agricultural commodities to be kept within optimal temperatures.

The three ATVS and refrigerated trucks

Additionally, the agri-business development incubator will function as a business advisory, print and design product labels, and facilitate food and drugs administration registration, among other services.

Some $263 million will be invested in the agricultural sector by the end of this year.