Agro should fill half of GDP: Bai


THE Government should “strongly consider” developing agriculture to the point where it represents at least 50 per cent of the total Gross Domestic Product, says chairman of the Rural Industries Council Sir Brown Bai.  He told The National that this would involve structural adjustments to the Department of Agriculture and Livestock and several commodities boards.
“Structural adjustments does not only mean changes to the structure of the department,” he said.
“The government system is integrated so if you want to change one aspect, you will also have to change other things as well.
“When I was talking about structural changes, we have to dictate which way the economy is going to go, how agriculture is positioned for growth according to that. That is why I was referring to distinct policy and plan for agriculture. “Once that is in place, where everyone participates in the formation of those policies, then we look at the roles and responsibilities of each of the organisations that must contribute to the implementation of those changes.
“Our people need help and we have made too many mistakes in the past by introducing polices without the supporting changes from the partners and stakeholders. There are so many loose ends at the moment.
“On the broader issue of structural change, PNG has been too reliant on the extractive sector and we have to change that by building the agricultural base.”