Mozambique: Rice production must increase, Minister says

24 April 2009

Maputo, Mozambique, 24 April – Mozambique needs to produce an extra 315,000 tonnes of rice in order to ensure production of the 615,000 tonnes required to meet the annual needs of the population and end external dependence on this grain, the Mozambican Minister for Agriculture said in Motaze.

During a visit to the rice fields in Motaze, Soares Nhaca said that farmers, as well as increasing rice production should focus on producing seed to end problems with importing production factors.

“This does not mean that if we produce 615,000 tonnes of rice we will have resolved the country’s hunger problem. We need to focus, at the same time, on other crops in order to have diversity in the diet,” the Minister said, for whom Mozambique has enough area to reach these targets.

According to Mozambican newspaper Notícias, Soares Nhaca said that his ministry was working in order to provide working equipment in order to improve current production levels.

“As well as equipment and technicians we need to set up conditions to ensure irrigation of the production fields. In terms of that our country has hydrographic resources to meet producers’ needs,” said Nhaca.

As well as in Magude district, the province of Maputo is also producing rice in the district of Matutuíne, where surveys carried out by specialists on the area showed that there was great potential.

Production of this grain is also being carried out in other regions of the country, such as the Chókwè region, in Gaza province, in the Zambezi Valley, as well as others that are considered to have great production potential. (macauhub)