K55m project to reduce imports

National
Source:
The National, Monday July 18th, 2016

The K55 million Sepik Plains agriculture project will contribute to the reduction of imports in the country, Trade, Commerce and Industry Minister Richard Maru says.
Speaking at the signing of the joint venture agreement between Kumul Consolidated Holdings (KCH) and Innovative Agro Industry on Friday, Maru said PNG needed to focus on reducing imports.
“It means that PNG does not have to import hundreds and millions of dollars worth of wheat and other imports from Australia to produce feed for this country,” Maru said.
“It’s a big import replacement project and I’m really thankful that our two partners have decided to put up capital and start replacing a very important import like wheat.
“The project will produce the volumes of stock feed required in the country and there are also thousands of hectares of land for cocoa in the Sepik Plains.
“The benefits are so big for this country and for the area and I’m convinced that financially it’s going to be a very good project for KCH.
“We need to do business a bit differently, we need to prepare our environment and make it a bit conducive for private sector investors.
“I’m extremely excited that with the funding that we have already invested, we would see some return,” he said