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New comprehensive agricultural survey to be launched in Seychelles

New comprehensive agricultural survey to be launched in Seychelles (Forimmediaterelease.net) The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has today signed a project document at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to launch a National Agricultural Survey Program (NASP) in the Seychelles aimed at providing support to a major national effort towards securing a better national food security status.

This project for a national census, which was signed by the FAO country representative Mr. Amadou Kamara and the Minister for Foreign Affairs Mr. Jean-Paul Adam is worth US$221,000 and will provide for both a national and international consultant, training for local staff in data collection and processing, data processing equipment and storage, as well as a high clearance pickup truck to assist the team.

“The Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations perceives that the project comes at a very opportune and interesting times when Seychelles is making great strides in economic development. Only two years ago, it suffered [the] blunt reality of world economic downturn. The project is surely an added boost of the national efforts towards national food security, and in the overall current national effort of the national development strategies. Once the project is in place, it will provide much-needed data to assess the progress that has been made in one of the components of the five themes and national development," said Mr. Kamara.

Minister Adam thanked the FAO for this landmark project for Seychelles in an area of increasing importance, given the world economic climate, the effects of climate change, and Seychelles' desire for a sustainable future.

“What we face in agriculture today is very different to the times before, and we recognize the role our farmers have to play in our national development strategy, in which food security is a critical focus," said the Minister.

“It is easy to say that we support farmers, but this project will allow us to best identify how we can do this; before we act we must ensure that we have all the data to support our actions," the Minister added.

This project will be the first agricultural census since 30 years and will span an 18-month period.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs hosted a workshop with local and international development partners to discuss a newly-proposed Medium Term National Development Strategy (MTNDS) for the period 2013-2017 earlier this week on March 29, which Mr. Kamara attended. The five core action areas of the strategy discussed were:

1) Climate change, renewable energy, and water
2) Human Resource Development
3) Economic infrastructure including ICT and transport
4) Food security, trade, and diversification
5) Improvement in measurement of national statistics

MEDIA CONTACT: Alain St. Ange, CEO, Seychelles Tourism Board, Email: alain.s@seychelles.com

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