The government will in 2018 introduce several “innovative rice varieties” in a quest to increase productivity in the rice sector.
Minister of Finance Winston Jordan announced on Monday during the presentation of Budget 2018, that government will partner with the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), through the Malaysia Agricultural Research and Development Institute (MARDI), in updating the expertise and technology in rice production, through a Reverse Linkage Project to the tune of US$863,000.
The project will see the introduction of innovative rice varieties from MARDI that are more resilient and will significantly increase rice yields per unit.
According to Jordan’s presentation, the rice industry is expected to record an output of 602,087 tonnes for 2017, an increase of 12.7 percent over 2016. This is due mainly to an additional 14,000 hectares planted for the 2017 spring crop and a further 74,481 hectares planted in the autumn crop as well as an improvement in the yield.
He stressed that Government is committed to improving the livelihoods of rice farmers and noted that they recognise that one important aspect of strengthening stability and sustainability of Guyana‘s rice sector is to increase productivity per unit area.
Output from the rice industry is expected to expand to 617,353 tonnes in 2018, an increase of 2.5 percent.