Switch to organic farming, methods based on climate change urged
State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has urged farmers and stakeholders in the rice industry to learn and practice new agricultural methods in order to bring the past glory of rice production back to the country.
“We have prospects for regaining our past status as the top rice export country,” said the State Counsellor, calling the country “the world’s rice basket”.
She made the remark at the Myanmar Rice Federation Stakeholder Forum in Nay Pyi Taw yesterday.
Myanmar’s rice exports this fiscal year was more than 3 million tons, the most in over 70 years. As part of a return as one of the region’s top rice exporters, the State Counsellor urged the country’s farmers and stakeholders to turn to organic farming, noting that the world is moving towards healthier organic crops.
She pledged to support the farmers, urging them to pass the integrity and value of agriculture to their children, as the agriculture sector continues to play a large part in development of the country.
She also urged the children of peasants to seek opportunities in agriculture, reminding them of the situation in developed countries when youths from rural areas walked away from farms and worked in cities, creating problems in the agricultural sector.
At the ceremony, the Myanmar Rice Federation announced the basic prices for rice this year as part of efforts for providing a guarantee to the rights and interests of the country’s peasants.
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi also stressed the importance of doing research on climate change, warning of the country’s weaknesses in performing research for the agricultural sector.
“It is very important to do research on a new system of agriculture which is based on climate change,” she said.
The ceremony was also attended by Chairman of the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw Legal Affairs and Special Cases Assessment Commission Thura U Shwe Mann, Union Ministers Dr. Aung Thu, U Thant Sin Maung, U Win Khaing, Dr. Than Myint and Dr. Win Myat Aye, MPs, members of the Nay Pyi Taw Council and responsible personal from organisations and associations related with the rice industry and farmers.
Following the announcement of the basic index for the price of rice, Union Minister for Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation Dr. Aung Thu, Union Minister for Commerce Dr. Than Myint and President of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry U Zaw Min Win delivered speeches.
At the forum that followed, local and foreign experts discussed the rice industry sector in Myanmar.—Myanmar News Agency