1 April 2021
The Government of Japan has funded a project in Papua New Guinea to prevention the spread and lessen the impacts of COVID-19 along the agricultural value chain in country.
The aim of the project is to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 throughout the food system, while restoring food production, improving nutritional status and strengthening the resilience of vulnerable populations.
The one year project commencing in April 2021 will be delivered in provinces with confirmed cases of COVID-19, with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) as the lead implementing agency.
The project will be implemented in close collaboration with the Department of Agriculture and Livestock (DAL), National Agriculture Research Institute (NARI), National Agriculture Quarantine and Inspection Authority (NAQIA), Fresh Produce Development Agency (FPDA), as well as NGOs and Civil Society Organizations, including Japanese NGOs.
The national State of Emergency (SOE) and lockdown that ensued after Papua New Guinea confirmed its first case of COVID-19, resulted in various economic and social disruptions in the country, affecting the food systems, agri-food supply chains and accessibility to markets.
Under this project, FAO along with key government and international and local partners will implement the following three components: 1) Preventing the spread and mitigating the impact of Covid-19 along the agriculture value chain; 2) Multiplication and distribution of seeds and planting materials; and 3) Income generating agricultural activities for smallholder farmers.
Total funds generously donated by the Government and People of Japan for the project is 1.8 million USD.
Japanese Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Papua New Guinea, His Excellency Mr Kuniyuki Nakahara states that ‘’This project takes on a people-centered approach and will contribute significantly to food security, improved nutrition, livelihoods and job creation that is instrumental for sustainable and inclusive growth and development in the targeted provinces in PNG.’’
Project interventions will also aim to address the humanitarian-development nexus by implementing activities that respond to the most vulnerable population while making investments in building their capacities to sustain livelihoods and enhance resilient agricultural development well beyond the life of the project.