Growth hits 30pc of GDP


THE contribution of the agriculture sector to the country’s gross domestic product grew from 19 per cent in 2010 to around 30 per cent today, according to vice-minister for agriculture and livestock Henry Ame.
Ame said the contribution of agriculture to food security through domestic cultivation for home consumption was estimated at K5 billion annually.
Its contribution to the export trade economy, according to Bank of Papua New Guinea figures, was around K2.9 billion in 2011.
“In fact, the motivation behind the PNG Vision 2050 is the challenge of how do we as a nation leverage and manage revenues from mining, oil and gas to build vibrant agriculture, forestry, fisheries and tourism sectors,” he said.
“Up until 2009, coffee was the highest cash crop income earner. Since 2010, oil palm has become the highest income earning commodity crop.
In 2011, oil palm generated K1448.7 million, followed by coffee at K927.4m, cocoa K284.4 million, copra K244.7 million, rubber K40.9 million and tea K14.2 million.”
He said Alotau Accord II placed agriculture as the number one priority subsector in the non-renewable sector to increase economic growth.
“This policy shift follows the drastic drop in metal, oil and gas in the world market prices in recent years leading to significant budget deficits resulting in cash flow problems experienced by the government,” Ame said.
“The government needs to broaden its revenue sources that has over the past depending entirely on the extractive sector.”