Rwanda, Rhineland Palatinate sign cooperation agreement
Written by: Administrator
Saturday, August 31st, 2019, 7:41
Rwanda and the Rhineland Palatinate, a state in Germany have signed a Joint Letter of Intent to deepen cooperation in areas of agriculture both sides deepen their cooperation.
The cooperation will see both Rwanda and Rhineland promote cooperation in the fields of agriculture mainly in smart farming, precision farming, sustainable winegrowing and enhancing cooperative management by introducing new management techniques and tools, and exchange visits between cooperatives in Rwanda and Rhineland-Palatinate.
“We will as Rwanda learn a lot from the Rhineland Palatinate since they are highly experienced in smart farming, winegrowing and cooperative management,” Dr Gerardine Mukeshimana, Rwanda’s Minister of Agriculture said while signing the cooperation on August 29, 2019.
She adds, “When you go into Rwanda Youth in Agribusiness Forum exhibition, you find that so many of the young people are venturing into wine making, so it’s important that we start thinking how do we provide ingredients that are needed for wine making with these young people.”
The Minister adds that Rwandan farmers are shifting from subsistence agriculture to commercial farming and there is need to support them in order for them to get incomes for their families.
“It’s important to note that the future of agriculture is lying in high value commodities,” she added.
Dr Volker Wissing, Minister of Economic Affairs, Transport, Agriculture and Viniculture of the Rhineland Palatinate who signed on behalf of the state noted that Rhineland state has alot of expertise in wine making and grapes farming which would help Rwanda also grow its viticulture subsector.
“The most important thing is to bring people together, connect your authorities but also connect the scientific sector and then identify concrete projects. After that, we shall look at how to finance viable projects,” he said.
The Minster further explained that agreement will also enable Rhineland support Rwanda in capacity building in data management for precision agriculture in Rwanda. The Minister also over saw the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between University of Applied Sciences-INES Ruhengeri with TH Bingen University of Applied Science in the Rhineland Palatinate.
Smart farming is in line with priorities of the current Strategic Plan for the Transformation of Agriculture (PSTA4) in Rwanda.
The strategy prioritizes the use of ICT solutions as well as digitizing the agriculture sector to improve agriculture productivity and competitiveness, and decision making for policy makers, farmers and the private sector, to attain sustainable agriculture production, make sound investments in agriculture and use resources efficiently.