PM WANTS EAST SEPIK TO BE VANILLA HUB
Prime Minister, James Marape wants East Sepik to become the vanilla capital of the world and an international hub for the cocoa trade.
This is not an impossibility, with Papua New Guinea – mainly through East Sepik – being one of the top vanilla producers in the world with the World Bank predicting that PNG will soon become No. 2 after Madagascar.
East Sepik is also the top producer of cocoa in PNG with the country’s cocoa being rated very highly in the world for quality.
The Government has plains to develop the massive Sepik Plains into the biggest agriculture hub of the country.
PM Marape said K2 million worth of vanilla cuttings and cocoa seedlings would be distributed to the people of Angoram so that they could go into large-scale commercial cultivation of these crops.
He said this in Angoram on Thursday (April 14 2022) when opening the Angoram District Office and Angoram Market, and launching the Angoram Sports Stadium and Bank South Pacific branch.
The Prime Minister also gave K5 million to Angoram MP, Salio Waipo, to complete various projects in the district.
“I want East Sepik – Angoram, Maprik, Wosera-Gawi, Yangora-Saussia, Ambunti-Dreikikier and Wewak – to become to become the capital of vanilla, not just for Papua New Guinea, but for the whole world,” PM Marape said.
“I also want East Sepik to become an international hub for cocoa.
“You have the land and organic soil to achieve this.
“I want your partnership and your commitment today, people of Yangoru.
“Young men: Drinking home brew will not change your lives, going back to the land will change your lives.
“It is Easter, but do not just carry the cross of Jesus if you are not going back to the land, do not go to church if you do not want to work the land.
“I point you toward agriculture.
“That’s the easiest and quickest way to put money in your pockets.”
PM Marape said he had been informed by East Sepik Governor, Allan Bird, that families could make K20,000 annually for one-hectare of vanilla and K15,000 annually for one-hectare of cocoa.
“The people here have more than one-hectare of land,” he said.
“Every family has three to four hectares.
“If you put your efforts into commercial agriculture, instead of subsistence agriculture, this is in line with the Government’s ‘Take Back PNG’ policy.
“It about villagers making money on their own land.
“Your Government has put in place a policy on price support.
“If the price of cocoa, coffee or vanilla is down, the Government will hike this up through price support.
“We want people to make money and remain in their villages.”
PM Marape said the Government would develop the Sepik Plains into the biggest agriculture hub of PNG.
“We have the biggest plain in all of Papua New Guinea,” he said.
“This should be the focus to turn the people of East Sepik into becoming economically-productive.
“We want to turn the entire Sepik Plains into an economic hub which will ensure that everyone has money in your pockets.”