Agricultural sector is the foundation of the national economy, as roughly 70 per cent of the country’s population relies on the farming industry. It can be said that agricultural development is directly associated with the quality of life of farmers. To ensure farming rights for them, the Farmland Law 2012 and the Vacant, Fallow and Virgin Lands Management Law 2012 have been amended and enacted, according to the country’s prevailing situation.
Also, improvement of the agricultural sector is intertwined with the maintenance and repair of the irrigation system, including dams. The system sufficiently irrigates about 1.23 million acres of monsoon paddy and about 1.167 million acres of summer paddy. Thanks to it, an additional 260,000 acres of summer paddy could now be irrigated.
The government has dug about 1,500 tube-wells to ensure farmers get more water for their cultivation. Moreover, it dug about 400 new tube-wells to be used primarily as a source of drinking water.
In the farming sector, an extensive use of agricultural mechanisation could minimize cultivation time and reduce wastages. Thanks to the government’s attempts to implement mechanised farming, crops can now be grown and completely harvested by machinery on about 75 per cent of the net plantation areas.
As part of its serious effort, the government was able to implement the successful release of up to 63,417 acres of farmland that was confiscated during the past history of the nation. Of the total, 13,091 acres have been returned to the farmers and the remaining 50,326 acres to the respective ministries, states and regions.
The key objective of the government is to boost the country’s economy, based on the farming sector. And to reach this objective, the government is trying to promote the country’s agricultural production, according to its national export strategy.
The government has been continuously putting forth efforts to fulfill the basic needs of the sector, including attainment of good quality seeds, utilisation of production machinery, systematic use of fertilizers and insecticides, and resolving the issue of a scarcity of farm technicians. In addition, the government has been making efforts in obtaining loans from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to encourage a shift from conventional to mechanized farming. Arrangements have also been made to disburse loans to farmers through the Myanma Economic Bank.
Regarding agricultural loans, the government has increased the loan amount from Ks100,000 to Ks150,000 per acre of paddy. For other crops, the loan amount has been raised from Ks20,000 to Ks50,000 per acre, with plans to increase the amount to Ks100,000. These implementations clearly prove the government’s strenuous efforts in developing the agricultural sector, which is the cornerstone of the country’s economy.