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Rwanda has embarked on a plan of transforming agriculture sector through commercialization, irrigation and mechanization and making agriculture attractive to the youth, especially as a form of employment.

The country’s minister of agriculture and animal resources Geraldine Mukeshimana said so on Wednesday during the 4th Strategic Plan for the Transformation of Agriculture (PSTA4) knowledge seminar in the capital Kigali.

“We have stepped up efforts to accelerate our country’s path to prosperity, inclusive growth and job creation for young people by moving from agricultural commitments to action,” said Mukeshimana.

The meeting, which runs from June 7 to 9, brings together about 200 domestic and international experts in agriculture sector to discuss ways to accelerate agriculture development in Rwanda in a bid to sustain the country’s growth.

The minister said Rwanda’s agric sector has witnessed incredible progress through the implementation of the third phase of Strategic Plan for the Transformation of Agriculture in the country, where food and cash crop production tremendously increased leading to poverty reduction to 39.1 percent in 2016 from 44.9 percent in 2011.

Agriculture in Rwanda accounts for a third of the country’s GDP, employing about 69.2 percent of the total population. It contributes 47 percent of Rwanda’s domestic goods and exports.

Available figures from the ministry of agriculture indicate that the sector has generated 60 percent of foreign exchange and provides 75 percent of raw materials to manufacturing industries.

The meeting will also discuss the possibility of applying ICT in the agriculture transformation, and devise better ways of helping small holder farmers to be productive and encourage investments. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/NewsGhana.com.gh