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Youth involvement and modernization necessary to develop Agriculture: Vice President Pun

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Vice President Nanda Bahadur Pun inaugurates the First Entrepreneurship Conference organised the 4-H Nepal under the Lalitpur-based office of Department of Agricultre, on Monday, July 4, 2016. Photo: RSS

In Picture: Vice-President Nanda Bahadur Pun inaugurates the First Youth Agriculture Entrepreneurship Conference organised by the 4-H Nepal at the Lalitpur-based office of Department of Agriculture, on Monday, July 4, 2016. Photo Courtesy: RSS

 

Kathmandu, July 4, 2016: Vice President Nanda Bahadur Pun has said that the involvement of youths in agriculture is a must for the development of the sector changing the face of the nation.

Addressing the Youth Agriculture Entrepreneurship Conference organized in the capital today, Vice President had said that modernization of agriculture and youth involvement in the sector is very essential to make the country prosperous. “To take agricultural sector ahead, it is very essential for the government to bring programmes involving youths themselves in decisive roles,” he said. “Though Nepal is an agricultural country, in lack of modern agricultural techniques, we have not been able to produce enough for our own consumption. Traditional and subsistence farming won’t make us self-dependent. And, economic revolution in the nation is not possible without agricultural revolution.” He further mentioned that the decisive role of youths involved in the sector is required to bring about a sectoral change and asked the youths to take the lead for the agricultural revolution.

Similarly, Minister for Agricultural Development Haribol Gajurel said that the agriculture has gained priority in the national budget for the first time after 1990. “Agriculture is the base for national development. In Nepal, agriculture is seeking modern technologies, youth involvement and capital,” he mentioned. He ensured to bring agricultural insurance into practice from this year itself and mentioned that measures would be taken to make agriculture professional and dignified.

“Agricultural development has now taken a direction. Had the sector been prioritized much earlier, youths didn’t have to go abroad in search for jobs. We need to work in a way that those involved in farming are taken with due respect and the profession develops as a dignified one,” minister Gajurel further said. “If provided with investment, appropriate technologies and trainings, we can rapidly develop the sector, giving an immediate return with high turnover,” he expressed his thoughts. He also shared the plan of the government to celebrate the next decade as the ‘Fruit Decade’ to identify and promote different types of fruits being produced in Nepal.

Speaking amidst the programme, Yaron Mayer, Israeli ambassador to Nepal expressed that Israel is always ready to cooperate with Nepal to develop the agricultural sector and mentioned how Israel is ready to assist Nepal in promoting agro-technologies and conducting trainings to the youths interested in agriculture along with taking them to visit Israel to learn about the modern agriculture practices being followed there.

Lok Raj Awasthi, President of 4-H Nepal, the organizer of the conference, pointed out the need to bring ahead the issues related to agriculture and the problems that the youths involved in agriculture are facing to solve them collectively. “For that, we need to make a network of youths involved in farming that is not affiliated to any of the political parties and come ahead for achieving the common goal,” he opined. He further pointed out the need to provide the youths interested to get involved in the agricultural sector with required trainings, technological skills and loans and develop a feeling that farming is a prestigious occupation.

Being participated by more than 150 youth farmers and agro-professionals from over 50 districts in the nation, the conference seeks to discuss various problems, challenges and opportunities lying ahead in the agricultural sector in the nation, partnering with government, private sector and civil society, ultimately achieving the common goal and developing the sector.

By Basanta Kumar Dhakal