The MSG Director-General Ambassador Amena Yauvoli and the Manager Governance and Legal Affairs, Romulo Nayacalevu are in Bangkok, Thailand to attend the 48th Asia Pacific Coconut Community COCOTECH Conference and Exhibition and finalise discussion with the Executive Director of the APCC for the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with the Asia Pacific Coconut Community (APCC).
COCOTECH is the mandated technical panel for the APCC for sharing crucial knowledge, information and technology to ensure sustainability of the coconut sector. It brings together leading coconut experts to discuss, showcase, and make presentations on various sustainable coconut development policies, application of climate-smart agriculture practices relating to crop husbandry, product diversification initiatives of the coconut processing industry, advancing technologies for integrated management of emerging threats of pest and diseases of coconut and many other related topics.
Ambassador Amena Yauvoli, noted in the Conference that coconut and its by-products are important agricultural products within our Melanesian states that support our trade markets and economies, but because of the lack of information amongst other key technological and market access, MSG Member States have yet to access the full potential of the product.
He said, apart from the virgin coconut oils’ (VCO) with its scientifically proven medicinal properties the Conference also heard of how coconut products such as facial creams; powder; moisturisers, beauty oil; cooking oil; medicines and other product diversifications have become a demanded commodity in various markets in Asia; Europe and the United States.
The Director-General also made mention of the threat of invasive species and pests such as the rhinoceros beetle and the coconut mite that have damaged coconut trees, especially in some parts the Solomon Islands. However, he is optimistic that with MSG forging alliance with APCC, through the MOU, MSG member countries will have access the new applications and technology available and at the same time have access to information and innovative strategies to counter the destruction of these invasive species.
The MSG Secretariat understands that the MOU seeks to advance technical cooperation and programming support between the APCC and the MSG for the mutual benefits of our members and in particular to support the coconut industries in our member states.