GOILALA district in Central province has an enormous potential in agriculture which can be tapped with the PNG LNG project now underway.
Deputy Prime Minister Sir Puka Temu was in Tapini on Saturday and told locals they cannot let the opportunity slip by.
Sir Puka was there to re-open the Goilala highway, which has been in a dilapidated state and unusable for so long.
It will be declared a national highway next year.
He told the Goilala people to “grasp the opportunity and produce their best for the Port Moresby market.”
He said around 10,000 people from Europe, US and Asia were expected to be hired to work at the LNG plant at Papa/Lealea area, and Goilala must be a key supplier to meet the dietary needs of these workers.
“There will be a big demand for food in Port Moresby in the next four years as the LNG kicks off and with the fresh and abundant agricultural produce locals can grow in Goilala people, must be proactive and start mobilising land for agriculture and I urge particularly the youths there to toil the land and start planning your future,” Sir Puka said.
Sir Puka said it would be easier for locals to transport their variety of produce to Port Moresby having the road link in place and just being re-opened.
Sir Puka said Goilala had every thing and he was impressed by the huge and varied collection of fruit, nuts and vegetables that were displayed at the ceremony.
These included English potato and cabbage, sweet oranges, carrots, taro, banana, sweet potato (kaukau), orange, sweet corn, peanuts, shallots, avocado, and mandarin-which Sir Puka himself had the opportunity to taste an enjoy.
“What Goilala can produce is healthy, the sweetest and just as good as the fruit and vegetables mostly common in the Highlands provinces of PNG, so the people of Goilala must act now,” Sir Puka said.
The 92km Goilala highway leads from Kairuku on the Hiritano highway turn off all the way to Tapini station.
Sir Puka will work on a submission to get all roads in the remote areas of Goilala linked to the highway.
Funds would come from the K40 million that has been budgeted for next year under the Government’s transport and infrastructure development component.
This first phase of upgrading the road was estimated at K9 million from the Goilala district support improvement programme.