Ifad approves $3m loan for agriculture


12-April-2013

Minister Sinon addressing the farmers on Wednesday


He announced the loan approval to appreciative farmers who told Nation they were happy he stayed with them when he could, during a course run by Mauritian producers Livestock Feed Limited (LFL), at the International Conference Centre.

Saying when he answered questions in the National Assembly the loan seemed far off, he said he is happy it had been approved and his ministry will issue a press release about it soon.

“The loan has been approved on a lapse of time basis – the board of directors did not have to meet and discuss it. Each of them got a copy of the project documents, they found nothing wrong with it and agreed with the Ifad president and approved it.

“Now that that has been done what remains is the signing for the conditions of disbursement, set up the technical working group and show Ifad that we have set up consultative groups … for crops, livestock, for artisanal fisheries etc.

“Once they are satisfied we will open a bank account and the money will be disbursed.”
Mr Sinon welcomed LFL’s contribution and the farmers’ keen interest in what they were being taught about ways to raise their production and farming, adding that the company involvement shows our agriculture sector is recovering.

“They did not run the workshop because they necessarily like us, because they are not in the charity business. They are here because they have recognised Seychelles is now serious to pay attention to, and invest in agriculture and support it.

“This sector was hardly noticed but now it has got the attention of Ifad, the African Development Bank, the LFL and I know from what is happening in my office, there are people who are keen to invest in agriculture.”

He said he asked one of them why he wants to invest in agriculture here now, and he said you do not buy stocks of oil or gold when the prices are high but rather, when they are still low because you know the prices will rise, and when you sell they will be high.

“We want to invest and we know we will be looked at favourably,” he said, commending players who persevered in farming when things have been difficult.

He said the “bird which had broken legs and had practically no wings is walking around, about to run and will soon spread its wings and take off”.

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