Sanneh, the minister of Finance and Economics Affairs has said that the current
government remains committed to transforming the agriculture and natural
resource sector into a modern market-orientation commercial sector with
well-integrated value chains in order to increase incomes of agricultural value
The Finance minister made this statement while delivering the 2018 budget before members of the National Assembly. He said additionally, the ministry will work to address policy gaps, develop alternative irrigation schemes, develop groundwater extraction and support select value.
In efforts to increase the incomes of local farmers, the government has increased the farm gate price from D15, 300/ tone in 2016 to D17,300/ tone in 2017.
“Innovative financing for agricultural development will be pursued in collaboration with The Gambia’s bilateral and multilateral partners with particular emphasis on ensuring that women benefit from the facilities,” he said.
Other financing strategies, added will be pursued including the re-establishment of the Agricultural Development Fund/ Bank to assure appropriate access and affordability to meet medium and long-term needs for production and commercialisation, strengthening and expanding existing linkages between the economic agents and the financial service providers.
According to Minister Sanneh, the ministry will embark on sensitising farmers on climate change mitigation and coping strategies for farmers to make the best use of early rains and research on early maturing crops as alternative plan.
In response to the lack of livestock data, the department in collaboration with Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) conducted the 2016 National Livestock Census, which he said, is ready for validation.
“The results will be used for policy formulation, decision making and as a benchmark for subsequent livestock surveys.”
“In collaboration with development partners, the department has provided husbandry and veterinary service under 27 Ram Fattening schemes.”