Seychelles to strengthen ties with Kenya in agriculture

Seychelles to strengthen ties with Kenya in agriculture Seychelles and Kenya have enjoyed long standing relations over the past years especially in the Health and education sector. At present, there is a need to extend and strengthen this collaboration in other key economic sector such as agriculture given the challenges faced by the country to increase local food production. Seychelles can benefit from the experience and technical knowhow of Kenya, a key asset that has enabled them to be a significant producer and exporter in Africa.

On the sideline of UNEA meeting held in Kenya, Minister Joubert, met with H.E Keriako Tobiko, Cabinet Secretary Ministry of Environment and Forestry in the absence of the Kenyan Minister responsible for Agriculture to discuss new areas of collaboration. Discussions on agricultural cooperation it must be noted, had been initiated by President Ramkalawan with President of Kenya during recent bilateral meetings held at the margins of the 35th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union in Addis Abba Ethiopia, earlier this year.

The priorities communicated to the government high official include the recruitment of skilled personal such as veterinary doctor, entomologist and also a phyto pathologists to support the local agricultural sector. At present, there is a shortage of specialists in this field to assist farmers with local production.

The Minister also discussed the possibility of engaging with higher education institutions in Kenya, through a Memorandum of understanding, to provide training opportunities for students beyond the current diploma offered by the Seychelles Institute of Agriculture and Horticulture. Under such arrangement, there could be the possibility for exchange s of skilled personal and students.

Cooperation in livestock and crop development were also discussed. Apart from the movement of agricultural commodities, Kenya has other items that Seychelles is seeking such as certain agricultural inputs and breeds of small farm animals such goats, sheep and pigs). Seychelles expressed the wish to source these items from Kenya, and also collaborate with its research centres with a view to improving local capacity.

The ideas proposed were very much welcome by the Kenyan Cabinet Secretary, who shall organize for follow up discussions with the respective ministry. The two countries agreed to review existing cooperation agreements to incorporate priorities from these discussions and through that enhance bilateral relations for the mutual benefit of both nations.