Fiji PM Bainimarama Launches New Agricultural Scholarships
SUVA, Fiji, Feb. 22, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama has launched a new Government scholarship program to train up to 50 farmers a year, provide them with start-up capital and put farming in Fiji on a more commercial footing.
Last week, the Prime Minister handed letters of appointment to more than 40 young people - many of them from poorer families - who are beginning a 12 month certificate training course at the Fiji National University's Koronivia Campus.
Hailing them as the farmers of tomorrow, the Prime Minster challenged them to be the pioneers of a national effort to reduce Fiji's dependence on imported foodstuffs. "We've relied far too much on imports...when we have vast tracts of under-utilised fertile lands capable producing the food we need. Indeed, we are capable of producing not just for our basic needs but for the hotels and for markets overseas," he said.
The Prime Minister said his Government is committed to securing Fiji's supply of food by modernising agriculture, making it more productive and ensuring that the country becomes self sufficient. "We need to constantly explore new agricultural methods, introduce new technology and farming techniques, new seed varieties, new crops and improve animal husbandry," he said.
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