by Eric Haurupma – EM TV News, Port Moresby
Proposed projects by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), and the PNG Forest Authority are focused on addressing climate change issues, increasing food security and generating income for rural Papua New Guineans.
These ACIAR projects include private sector development of the canarium or galip nut industry, development of durable wood products, and improvement and management of teak and sandalwood trees.
The projects involve preserving forested area and nurturing seeds from the wild, by replanting them for timber production and other uses.
Through stakeholder participation by lead agencies, like NARI and Forestry, these projects will be implemented right across Papua New Guinea.
NARI’s Director General, Dr. Sergie Bang, in a recent workshop in Port Moresby, outlined a number of these impact projects like the canarium or galip nut and sandalwood cultivation.
This will benefit people in the rural areas by providing housing materials as well as generating income for them.
However, the challenge now, is lack of sufficient data due to funding constraints, coupled with customary land issues which are impeding the progress of these projects.