South Sudan launches plan for agricultural takeoff

JUBA, Jan. 12 (Xinhua) — South Sudan on Thursday launched a five-year strategy aimed at boosting food security and agriculture development in the war-torn East African country.

The Comprehensive Agriculture Master Plan (CAMP) and Irrigation Development Master Plan (IDMP) will act as a blue print to guide ministries and development partners in executing agricultural projects in oil-dependent South Sudan.

The framework identified 113 ambitious investment projects in the areas of crop farming, forestry, livestock and fisheries, and agro-processing for the next five years.

The master plan aims to help revolutionize the country’s agriculture sector from “subsistence” to a modern and sustainable agricultural production.

Janka Duku, Animal Resources and Fisheries Minister, said the government is going to move swiftly with implementation of the projects listed in the master plan in order to lift the people out off hunger and poverty.

Duku urged the government and development partners to join hands and mobilize funds for the implementation of the projects.

“The intention of the document is to end the suffering and predicament that we are in and the also change the mindset that oil is the only resource we survive on,” Duku said.

“If we take the utility and proper use of this document, then we can make it our redeemer to end the suffering of this country,” he added.

Environment Minister Josephine Napwon described the CAMP as a landmark framework that seeks to promote climate-friendly agriculture and environmental conservation by addressing causes of climate change.

“Agriculture, not oil is the back bone of South Sudan. I hope that the CAMP will be a blue print for development,” Napwon said.

The world’s youngest country is blessed with enormous agricultural wealth that remains untapped due to years of conflict, lack of land policies and poor infrastructure.

According to data from the Ministry of Food Security and Agriculture, 648,000 square kilometers of the African country is arable, home to 11.7 million heads of cattle and is also capable of producing 400 tonnes of fish annually from its vast Swamps and the River Nile. Enditem

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