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ISRAELI PARTNERSHIP CRITICIZED

Staff Reporter 1/16/2014 | |
The Government's move to partner with an Israeli company, to develop two major agriculture impact projects in the country, has been criticized.

Cabinet, recently approved this arrangement with the L-R Group of Israel, appointing and directing the State Project Team to oversee, negotiate and facilitate the development and implementation of the two projects. 

These are the development of a dairy farm and production project at the Ilimo Farm in Central and an agro-industry project, in Morobe.

But, Director of the Institute of National Affairs, Paul Barker, says the Illimo farm previously has a history of being closed down by an Israeli company, which operated it some years back.

Mr Barker says, the government's move should instead, consider setting up suitable conditions for private sector investments, in these projects.

"It seems a little strange for the government going into a partnership of this nature, because the real priority should be to set suitable conditions for private sector investors, whether large or small, to invest their money and set conditions for them to be able to have viable operations, whereas, giving a special favorable arrangement for one company whilst the rest of the agriculture sector is being ignored seems to be an odd way of going about it.

"Would hope that this new enterprise would show a greater capacity to perform than the previous one.

"Certainly we need innovation in agriculture," Mr. Barker said.

ONE PNG / NBC

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