SI Government Economic Stimulus Package (ESP) contributes to economic self-reliance in West Guadalcanal
The North West Guadalcanal Development Association (NWGD) has introduced a new initiative ‘bulk marketing’ for rural farmers to generate income amidst impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic.
With the initiative rural farmers will not spend money to travel to the Honiara Central market to sell their produce.
The Chair of the Association Simon Chottu said under the new initiative the rural farmers will supply their local produce in bulk to the buyers residing in the capital city, Honiara.
He said the impact of Covid-19 had affected the rural farmers from West Guadalcanal to take their local produce for marketing when the government declared the emergency zone.
On April 18, 2021 Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare declared Poha River in West Guadalcanal and Alligator Creek in East Honiara as emergency zones.
Mr. Chottu said in response the Association introduced bulk marketing to support rural farmers to directly sell their produce from home in bulk.
He said the local produce the farmers normally sell in bulk, include fresh vegetables and root crops like cassava, pawpaw, banana, chilli, sugarcane, tomatoes, pineapple, vegetables, dry coconut and yams.
A local farmer and member of the Association Festers Dalei said the establishment of the Association was timely adding it had helped a lot of local farmers to sell their local produce to generate income and sustain their livelihood during the period of uncertainty.
“All we need during this pandemic is money and the formation of this association has answered our struggle to meet our daily needs and also support our children to be able to complete their education,” he said
Mr.Dalei said the Association also helped local farmers sell their noni fruits.
Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare, when he visited the establishment of the Association, praised the members for developing their resources for economic self-reliance.
He described the Association as a classic example of a great initiative that engages people in agricultural activities that contribute to positive economic development and financial self-reliance.
The NWGDA was established this year when the Government announced its Economic Stimulus Package initiative as a way to properly organise local farmers who are willing to enhance their economic activities.
The Association is inclusive of copra, cocoa, noni, root crops, poultry, fisheries, youth events, programs, training, tourism and networking.
Island Sun newspaper