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Gov’t seeks private sector partners in agriculture

Published:Friday | March 2, 2012 | 8:59 AM

Agriculture Minister, Roger Clarke, says the government is willing to make available government assets such as land to partners willing to invest in certain areas of agriculture.

Speaking yesterday at the Jamaica Investment Forum in Montego Bay, Clarke said the government is proposing the pairing of key government non-cash assets with private capital, to achieve economic development in the short, medium and long-term.

He said such government assets include land and buildings, human resource, and policy support.

Clarke said the government is looking at growing emerging areas of the sector such as ginger, turmeric, yam, pineapple and sheep.

He noted that diversification of the agricultural sector could improve the country’s competitive advantage, as many of these products are in high demand.

He noted, for example, that Jamaican ginger has been scientifically proven to be superior in flavour and aroma, yet the country is only fulfilling 10 per cent of unsolicited orders of the root.