Gov’t pledges to increase access to quality seeds

The government will ensure all farmers get quality seeds to strengthen efforts geared at improving agricultural production. Dr. Agnes Matilda Kalibata, the agriculture minister, said the government would work with the private sector to achieve this goal, adding that quality seeds were essential to enhance agro-output.
Improved cassava variety, one of the many crops and technologies, that are being displayed at the show at Murindi. The New Times / Peterson Tumwebaze
Improved cassava variety, one of the many crops and technologies, that are being displayed at the show at Murindi. The New Times / Peterson Tumwebaze

The government will ensure all farmers get quality seeds to strengthen efforts geared at improving agricultural production.

Dr. Agnes Matilda Kalibata, the agriculture minister, said the government would work with the private sector to achieve this goal, adding that quality seeds were essential to enhance agro-output.

Dr. Kalibata was launching the 8th Annual Kigali National Agriculture show at Murindi Agriculture Show Grounds on Thursday.

The show has attracted farmers, agro-inputs dealers, small-and-large scale agriculture produce processors, sector bodies, including the Rwanda Agricultural Board, the National Agricultural Exports Board, the Private Sector Federation and service providers.

It is being held under the theme: “Encouraging private sector investment for sustainable agricultural transformation”.

It is showcasing new agriculture technologies such as simple irrigation equipment and crop breeding that can boost agro-output in the country if applied.

Kalibata challenged the private sector to play a big role in the transformation of the agricultural sector to enhance economic development at the household and national levels.

Kalibata added that the exhibition was an opportunity for Rwandan and foreign investors to find relevant areas in which they can invest, as well as share best techniques and practices.

The minister, who was taken on a guided tour of the exhibition by NAEB boss Alex Kanyankore, also urged Rwandans to take on agriculture as a business to fight poverty.

She challenged the exhibitors to learn from the show and go improve on their ventures. She also advised farmers to work with the Private Sector Federation, saying it provides them an avenue to air their grievances and also access financial assistance.

The exhibition, which started on Thursday and ends tomorrow, also provides financial institutions an opportunity to market their services to smallholder farmers and processors.

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