Farmers to gain benefits from seeds, farm inputs from Government

Vice President U Henry Van Thio meets with officials at a meeting concerning agricultural sector and providing remedies to the country’s basic production sector in Nay Pyi Taw. Photo: MNA
Vice President U Henry Van Thio meets with officials at a meeting concerning agricultural sector and providing remedies to the country’s basic production sector in Nay Pyi Taw. Photo: MNA

Farmers whose crops were destroyed by disasters in 2018 would be given seeds and inputs, such as fertilizer, worth billions of kyats in a timely manner under a scheme to get them back on their feet in terms of food security.
“The Union Government is taking measures to distribute rice seeds, fertilizer and cash aid to farmers so that they can re-grow rice on their farmlands which were destroyed by flooding recently,” said Vice President U Henry Van Thio yesterday.
“It has been found that organizations are also giving a helping hand in providing assistance in the form of seeds and fertilizer to farmers, but the supply doesn’t meet the current demand,” said the Vice President.
The Vice President disclosed the scheme, in his capacity as the leader of the Steering Committee for Protection of Farmers’ Rights and Promoting Interests, at a meeting with ministries concerned in Nay Pyi Taw.
The meeting was held to seek ways for effectively dealing with the agricultural sector, which is largely hit by disasters every year, and for providing remedies to the country’s basic production sector. More than 600,000 acres of vegetable crops and nearly 400,000 acres of paddy were destroyed by disasters in 2018.
“We need to find a system or a scheme which can provide a sustainable solution to preventing losses caused by disasters instead of annually providing aid to farmers in the aftermath,” said Vice President U Henry Van Thio.
He urged participants at the meeting to find possible ways for the system, including reviewing the volume and repayment period for agricultural loans, implementing the weather-based crop insurance system, establishing funds by the government and private associations.
U Henry Van Thio also called on officials concerned to set sectors to be carried out by Union-level, state- and regional-level authorities and private associations.
The Vice President also stressed the need to quickly and effectively implement the outcomes of the meeting, saying that the Farmers Rights Law has guaranteed providing aid to the farmers when they suffered losses due to disasters.
Following the opening speech of the Vice President, Union Minister for Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation Dr. Aung Thu reported on the ministry’s current efforts for ploughing and land preparation in farmlands with machinery, dredging silt and sand left by recent water overflow caused by the collapse of the Swa Dam’s spillway, reclamation and distribution of seeds to farmers.
Afterwards, Union Minister for Electricity and Energy U Win Khaing, Union Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement Dr. Win Myat Aye and Union Attorney-General U Tun Tun Oo reported on preparedness for quick response to disasters, emergency funds and National Disasters Management funds and preparation for providing aid to farmers.
Departmental officials and representatives of the Myanmar Rice Federation and Myanmar Agribusiness Public Corporation made suggestions and discussed requirements and challenges in helping the farmers.
In his concluding remarks, the Vice President urged the state and regional authorities, private associations and farmers to cooperate among each other to overcome the current challenges and to give priority to rice rather than other crops.—MNA

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