by Edwin Fidelis – EM TV, Kokopo
The Productive Partnerships in Agriculture Project or PPAP is looking at building feeder roads to encourage cocoa farming in the East New Britain Province.
While the government’s attention has been on upgrading existing roads, the PPAP says, there has to be equal recognition given to smallholder famers in remote areas. This is to give easy access to farmers to take their produce from the village straight to the market.
The Pamkubau feeder road in Toma, in the Gazelle District of East New Britain Province, is a recent contribution from the Productive Partnerships in Agriculture Project.
It is the main link, connecting a cocoa nursery with the main road. It seeks to promote the existence of smallholder cocoa farming in the province.
While many may not see it as an important infrastructure, for those who use it, it is an important one.
The road project was funded by the World Bank through its implementers, the Productive Partnerships in Agriculture Project.
The feeder road is also seen as a measure taken to encourage cocoa farming in the province, despite the incursion of CPB that nearly crumbled the entire cocoa industry.
Good road network would mean, adequate service delivery; and enable active participants in the country’s growing economy.
A significant portion of East New Britain people live in rural areas, and continue to live a subsistence lifestyle.
In recent years, the provincial government has realised the level of contribution, made by rural areas into the its coffers; much of which comes from ordinary subsistence farmers in the village.