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PNG’S GULF PROVINCE OUT TO REVIVE COPRA INDUSTRY Gulf province called agricultural "sleeping giant"

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (PNG Post-Courier, April 29, 2008) –Kokonas Indastri Koporesen (KIK) is out to revive the coconut industry in the Gulf Province.

And its managing director Tore Ovasuru presented nine "Rapid Rural Appraisal’’ reports for agricultural projects in the three local level government council areas of the Malalaua District last Thursday.

[PIR editor’s note: Kokonas Indastri Koporesen (KIK) plays a key role in developing, promoting and regulating the coconut industry in Papua New Guinea. KIK came into existence in 2001 through a government Act that deregulated the copra marketing function from its predecessor to the private sector.]

At the launching of the projects were Kerema Open MP Pitom Taitus Bombom, officials from the Gulf Provincial Government, KIK officials and representatives of other government agencies.

Mr Ovasuru said KIK would work with the people on the existing coconut trees, then move on to replanting new ones.

"Meporo Kerema oil palm project will be in progress shortly. Documents for the projects are now with the National Executive Council (NEC). The investor for the project is on standby," he said.

Gulf Province is a sleeping giant in terms of agriculture and the people of Gulf, administrators and the leaders should realise this, Mr Ovasuru said. There is a need for the people to mobilise and together with the existing resources, they will benefit through the National Agriculture Development Plan (NADP) and the National Planning Office by meeting all criteria and submitting their proposals. Mr Ovasuru said the people of Malalaua had the potential to utilise their land to grow coconut, cocoa and oil palm. He told the people to respond positively to his officials in planting of the cash crops by making available their land.

Papua New Guinea Post-Courier:

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