December 09, 2016

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Protection and promotion of the interests of farmers

Myint Win Thein

In past eras, most politicians have characterised farmers as those to whom the whole country owes gratitude. This is because they are the providers of food for the entire country. They truly deserve our gratitude.
But in more recent times, they have become victims of land confiscation, price speculation, the state monopoly of the grain trade, private lenders and many restrictions. As a result, many of them have left their villages to work in neighbouring countries.
Now, the new government has taken measures to protect the interests of farmers by reducing the impact of crop prices on paddy growers. Vice President U Henry Van Thio, who is also the leader of the Committee for Protection and Promotion of Farmers’ Interests, urged officials of the Agricultural Produces Management Committee and Rice Purchasing Supervisory Working Groups in states and regions to set up rice purchasing centres at rice mills and to transport, store, process and distribute rice properly.
In addition, the vice president urged officials to find ways and means to reduce the impact of price fluctuation. It is the first right
step the government has
taken for peasant farmers, who make up a huge majority of the population in Myanmar, where rice is the staple food.
Solving the problems of peasant farmers amounts to helping the majority of people in the country.
Therefore, efforts to help solve the problems and difficulties of peasant farmers should be combined with other efforts that will help them overcome other unfavorable conditions that are jeopardising their lives.

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