Dairy farm project poised to ease currency issues


THE development of big agricultural projects such as the Illimo Dairy Farm outside Port Moresby will greatly assist in addressing issues such as foreign exchange shortages, Deputy Prime Minister Charles Abel says.
He visited the farm on Wednesday with Minister for Trade Commerce and Industry Wera Mori and Agriculture and Livestock Minister Benny Allen.
The project is being developed by Innovative Agro Industry Ltd in the Kairiku-Hiri district of Central.
The equity partners of the project are IAI with 50 per cent, the Government on 20 per cent, and Central with 30 per cent.
“We are here to create this relationship and support all the way. We need to catch up with some of our support in terms of funding and we need to do that,” Abel said.
“Papua New Guinea needs to produce its own food, its own energy, and bring the cost of doing business down.
“And it comes back to making sure that investments are created onshore, jobs are not exported and some of the short-term issues we continue to go through like the foreign exchange, and the ups and downs in our revenue – it’s because we are heavily import-reliant.”
Allen said the farm was a huge investment which supported a big agenda of the government to revive the agriculture sector.
“We should expect the dairy products on the shelves by January next year. It’s an exciting time for us and we look forward to that,” he said.

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