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File photo shows Onyoti Adigo Nyikwec, the national minister of Livestock and Fisheries

Transition to commercial agriculture hindered due to lack of technical capacity

The Minister of Livestock and Fisheries Onyoti Adigo Nyikwec said the lack of technical capacity has hindered efforts to transition from subsistence to the profitable commercial farming.

 “South Sudan is gifted with so many resources but there’s lack of capacity to move from subsistence farming to commercialized production. We need development partners to build the capacity of communities in order for the impact of projects to be realized,” said Nyikwec in a joint statement issued together with the World Bank in Juba on Sunday.

It came as the World Bank Vice President for Eastern and Southern Africa Victoria Kwakwa concluded her visit to the country.

Meshack Malo, the country representative for UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said the visit of the World Bank Vice President is an opportunity to showcase progress being made to develop the agriculture sector in South Sudan.

 “The visit of the World Bank Vice President, Victoria Kwakwa to South Sudan is an opportunity to showcase progress being made to develop the agriculture, livestock, fisheries, and natural resources sectors in South Sudan. In Bor, we saw inspiring examples of small agricultural enterprises which are improving the livelihoods of participants,” Malo said.

Josephine Joseph Lagu, the Minster for Agriculture and Food Security said her ministry is committed to mobilize national and international support to invest in agriculture, adding that agricultural transformation can be achieved through collective efforts.

 “The Ministry of Agriculture and Food security remains committed to mobilizing national and international support to invest in agriculture sector development. To this effect, the Government has declared a countrywide war against hunger and poverty. However, this war can only be fought and won through collective efforts in supporting agricultural transformation through dedicated development partners like the World Bank,” Lagu said.

FAO and the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) called for greater investment in the agriculture and social protection sectors in order to increase food security, nutrition and income of South Sudanese people, improve livelihoods of rural communities and contribute to the enhancement of the national economy of South Sudan. 

They said communities in South Sudan are faced with triple shocks of the Coronavirus disease (Covid-19,) adverse climate events, dwindling economy and locust outbreak in some parts of the country.

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