Japanese Consultant examines Nevisian Cotton Industry – Proposes assistance

The cotton industry on Nevis caught the eye of a Japanese fund, designed to provide grant assistance to human security projects.

Consultant for the Embassy of Japan based in Trinidad and Tobago for Japan?s Grant Assistance for Grass-roots Human Security Project Mr. Atsushi Miura, passed through Nevis recently. He told the Department of Information his visit was to explore the possibility of financial assistance for cotton production on the island.

?I am here in Nevis to see about the cotton irrigation project because we received an application to get funds for a project from the Department of Agriculture and we know it is a very important project,? he said.

During his visit Mr. Miura met with Minister of Agriculture Hon. Robelto Hector, other Agriculture officials and also visited a cotton cultivation site.

Chief Extension Officer in the Department of Agriculture Mr. Walcott James explained that the Japan official?s visit was important since the Nevis Island Administration had planned to push cotton production to a higher level and Japan?s had assistance with irrigation equipment that would assist cotton farmers.

He said Nevis had good reason to increase the production of cotton, which had been reintroduced by the Department to Nevis in 2007.

?For that period of 2007-08, we have a good production of 27,000 pounds of cotton among farmers and the Department of Agriculture. We generated a significant amount of money for the country and this is important because cotton has a secured market.

?So we have a choice for farmers to grow something that is sure. Apart from that the new price that they pay is very attractive, so therefore with the assistance that we are expecting from the Japanese people, we will be able to supply drip irrigation,? he said.

According to Mr. James, drip irrigation was essential to the cotton industry?s advancement on Nevis because of the erratic weather which could have serious consequences on the cotton crop.

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