By Adelaide Sirox Kari – EMTV News, Port Moresby
Eastern Highlands Province is aiming to become the agricultural hub through Small to Medium Enterprises (SME).
Governor, Peter Numu, and the Provincial Government have initiated a number of agriculture and livestock projects that will compliment a multi-million Agriculture Industrial Park in the province. The people of Eastern Highlands Province are no stranger to agriculture and livestock. For years, the province has been a strong producer of coffee, but now the EHP Governor wants the province to be a part of other agriculture and livestock initiatives. A number of projects have been initiated including the Kamauifa Piggery Project.
The Provincial Government through Highlands Agro Business and Consulting Services Limited will be working with the Kamauifa community. The project will begin with 50 pigs and training will be conducted with the community before 10 business certificates will be given along with piglets. The piglets, once matured will be re-sold to Highlands Agro Business and Consulting Services Limited at around K2000. The economic outlook in a year is K300,000.
Another of the agriculture initiatives is the Rice and Mushroom Project at Fimito in Goroka. The rice and mushroom farms was a part of 20-year research by Chinese developers from the Fujan province. The research found that the soil could produce rice 13 times in one yield. The 3 hectare rice and mushroom project will employ 5 neighboring communities that will work on the rice and mushroom fields for K100 per block. The agriculture projects are in place to perform an important role in the multi-million Agriculture Industrial Park – basically a down processing factory for fresh produce and rice to be sold.
The Provincial Government will also establish markets in each district, beginning with the Goroka main market, Henganofi market and Kainantu market.
Governor Numu says agriculture will not only grow SME but will also allow investors to invest in the Province to grow the economy.