$10 Million To Boost Agribusiness In The Pacific

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10th February 2010, 03:40pm - Views: 952

$10 Million to Boost Agribusiness in the Pacific

Media Release

10 February 2010

Australia will provide $10 million over four years to improve marketing opportunities and boost agribusiness in the Pacific.

The Pacific Agribusiness Research and Development Initiative (PARDI) provides a platform for stronger economic growth of Pacific island countries. The initiative aims to substantially improve the livelihoods of smallholder farmers in Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and Fiji, with expansion into Tonga, Samoa and Kiribati.

Parliamentary Secretary for International Development Assistance, Bob McMullan made this announcement today at the Pacific Conference on the Human Face of the Global Economic Crisis being held in Vanuatu.

"The Pacific faces a number of challenges if it is to meet the Millennium Development Goals, particularly given the impacts of the global food crisis and more recent recession," Mr McMullan said.

"This initiative makes it easier for farmers in the Pacific to get their products to markets. It enables them to be competitive players in the region, whilst ensuring their businesses are sustainable," Mr McMullan said.

"The initiative incorporates commodity, supply chain, marketing and capacity-building initiatives to give farmers the skills and knowledge to enable Pacific agribusinesses to grow."

The Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) initiative will be delivered through a partnership of Australian and Pacific island agencies including the Secretariat of the Pacific Community, the University of the South Pacific, national agricultural, forestry and marine departments in each country and National Agricultural Research Systems. Australian partners are the University of Queensland, Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation (Queensland), the University of Adelaide, University of the Sunshine Coast, James Cook University and Rural Solutions, SA.

Part of the Australian Government's international development assistance program, ACIAR helps identify problems and opportunities in developing countries, and commissions collaborative agricultural research between Australian and developing country researchers in fields where Australia has a special research competence. Visit www.aciar.gov.au

Media Contact: Sam Casey (McMullan) 0421 697 660; ACIAR Communications 0408 332 374

Media releases and speeches are available on AusAID's website www.ausaid.gov.au


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