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Agriculture ministry signs irrigation MoU with India firm

10th April 2012
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Prime Minister Mizengo Pinda looks on as Minister for Agriculture, Food Security and Cooperatives Prof. Jumanne Maghembe (R) exchanges contract documents with Jain Irrigation Systems Managing Director Atul Jain.

Tanzania has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Jain Irrigation Systems Ltd (JISL) of India to promote irrigation farming and efficient water management in the country.

The company is one of the world’s largest and technologically advanced companies in the industry.

The MoU, which was witnessed by Prime Minister Mizengo Pinda was signed by the Minister for Agriculture, Food Security and Cooperatives Hon Professor Jumanne Maghembe and Jain Irrigation Systems Ltd (JISL) Joint Managing Director Atul Jain in the presence of the Ministry’s Permanent Secretary Mohamed Muya and the firm’s local representative Rupa Suchak.

Speaking before the signing, Premier Pinda expressed the hope that Jain Irrigation Systems Limited Company will assist the sector to improve agriculture in the country, because of its global experience and research having worked with the system and countries facing water crisis such as Israel and Iran.

Premier Pinda said the signing of the MoU between Tanzania and Jain Irrigation Systems will provide an opportunity for the introduction of new technologies in modern irrigation, agriculture, food processing, renewable energy, farm machinery sectors and marketing, thereby strengthening the sector’s contribution to economic and social development,

Premier Pinda stated that the government would utilise the line of credit offered by the government of India for technological demonstration on the efficient water use coupled with the establishment of a banana tissue culture laboratory in the lake zone.

He assured Jain Irrigation Systems that Tanzania would provide all the support for the project to succeed for the benefit of farmers.

For his part Prof Maghembe said the project will begin next season as a pilot covering 24 areas nationwide where it was expected to cover banana, grapes and cotton in Kagera, Dodoma, Kilimanjaro, Manyara, Mwanza, Lindi, Singida and Mtwara regions.

He said the project in Bukoba would control banana diseases. The drip technology will enhance quality and increase cotton; grape and banana yield benefiting farmers.

The Jain Irrigation Systems Managing Director Jain promised that his company would leave no stone unturned to make Kilimo Kwanza a reality through the project. He said that JISL has been working with small and marginal farmers in India, helping them bring more land under cultivation with less water through the use of drip irrigation that has also enhanced agriculture, progress and productivity.

Suchak the Jain Irrigation Systems Ltd’s representative in Tanzania, expressed appreciation for Prime Minister Pinda’s affirmation that the focus of the government of President Kikwete was on an integrated approach towards agriculture development would have long-term benefits on conservation of water and soil.

The proven drip irrigation could shield Tanzanian farmers from the effect of climate change and empower them to become self-reliant, she noted.

SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN
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