Vanuatu imports a lot of agricultural products such as vegetables as well as meat, seafood and dairy compare to what it produces locally.
The Minister of Agriculture, Livestock, Forestry, Fisheries and Biosecurity (MALFFB), Matai Seremaiah, stressed this to the farmers in TORBA Province during the Agri-fish Tourism Festival.
”An International Finance Corporation Report has estimated that hotels and restaurants in Port Vila spend around Vt1.5 billion annually on importing fresh fruit items, meat and diary.
”Approximately 54% of the fresh products are imported overseas.
”The import level indicates vegetables (50%), fruits (30%), meat, seafood and dairy products (60%),” he conveyed.
Minister Seremaiah told the farmers and fishermen of the northern most province that the government, through the ministry which he heads will be supporting them to step up production.
He emphasized on the need to strengthen linkages between agriculture, fisheries and tourism to boost production, income, livelihoods and well-being of the farmers and their families.
He encouraged the farmers, fishermen and tourism owners to work closely with the government.
He said that this week marks a new milestone as it is the first time for the government to host the 3rd Agri-Fish Tourism Festival in TORBA Province.