Liberia-Agricculture-FAO

FAO vows to strengthen Liberian agriculture

APA-Monrovia (Liberia)

The Country Representative of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), Madam Mariatou Njie, says the United Nations agency remains committed to strengthening the agriculture sector in Liberia.

According to Madam Njie, agriculture occupies a strategic position in the economic development of Liberia.

Madam Njie made the statement Tuesday at the signing ceremony of “Linking Extension and Research to Farmers for Sustainable Agriculture, Food Security and Nutrition” held at the Ministerial Complex in the Monrovia suburb of Congo Town.

According to the UN Official, agriculture is a key contributor to meeting the country’s food security and the sector is a foreseeable source through which food security could be achieved at household
level by at least 60 percent of the country’s population.

She noted that agriculture provides livelihood for about two-thirds of the country’s population and accounts for at least 50 percent of total employment of which women account for about 50 percent of the agricultural labour force.

Madam Njie stressed that agriculture has the potential to be competitive to reduce considerably the import of agricultural commodities which can be produced in the country, noting that it has tremendous potential for investment, especially in agro-industries.

She pinpointed that to achieve a high standard of agricultural production, Liberia has to have strong research and extension systems.

She maintained that infrastructure for research and extension needs to be strengthened and recognized so that more relevant and appropriate research can be conducted to solve farmers’ problems and increase agricultural production and productivity.

Madam Njie asserted that successive agricultural and rural development depends on individual actions of millions of rural families whose decisions are shaped by the information, knowledge and technologies available to them.

She explained that today’s national agriculture research and extension systems face many challenges and opportunities, adding that there are serious limitations in planning and financial management of
agricultural research.

The FAO official emphasized that the project will provide an excellent opportunity to assist the government tackle the root causes of poor agriculture performance for an improved food security and nutrition in Liberia.

TSS/abj/APA

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