December 24, 2019
Department of Agriculture (DOA), Irrigation and Water Utilization Management Department (IWUMD), Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation (MOALI), and JICA Myanmar Office have officially agreed to start the new project on Rice Value Chain.
"The Project for Collaboration between Participatory Irrigation Management and Agricultural Extension" (hereinafter, "the new Project") targets Shwebo, Sagaing Region, and will be launched in early 2020. Shwebo is one of the major agricultural lands in Myanmar that covers approximately 500,000 acres of irrigable farmland. However, the actual irrigation area is remained the half of its potential in summer season, and absence of quality agricultural inputs as well as proper production practices among the farmers have made difficult to meet its expected potential productivity.
The Government of Myanmar has prioritized the agricultural development of the area, and in response to the strong will of the Government and recognizing its importance in the agriculture sector, JICA has been contributing to the agricultural development of the area with MOALI for years.
JICA is currently carrying out two agricultural projects in Shwebo. The "Agriculture Income Improvement Project" (Loan) supports developing the agricultural infrastructures including irrigation system, and takes a part in boosting up agricultural mechanization. Another is a technical cooperation project, "the Project for Improvement of Accessibility of Rice Certified Seeds" which undertakes capacity building of the major stakeholders to improve the quality of rice seed.
In order to accelerate the development of agriculture to improve productivity in Shwebo, the new Project is going to be initiated as the third JICA project in the area. It aims at bringing in the lucrative farming model through strengthening rice value chain and irrigation system management. It is expected to create a synergy effect with other precursor projects to bring the agricultural productivity and farmers' livelihood to the higher level.
Aside of Shwebo area, JICA has been supporting MOALI by combining its all the development schemes, which are Loan, Grant Aid, and Technical Cooperation, in elsewhere across the nation to strengthen the food value chain of the country. JICA will keep being committed to development of the agricultural sector, which is the most important and main industry for the economy growth of Myanmar.