Following successful discussions today (March 18) with the Panamanian Institute of Agricultural Marketing, the company announced its commitment to importing an increased quota of rice from Guyana.
And according to the Ministry of Agriculture, this will see over 11,300 tonnes of rice being shipped to the Spanish speaking country over the next three months.
The Guyana Rice Development Board (GRDB) during the initial phase of negotiations shipped approximately 7,500 tonnes of rice to Panama.
It was noted that the increase in quota will significantly assist rice farmers countrywide.
Agriculture Minister, Noel Holder while welcoming the delegation, lauded the Panamanian Government for its continued confidence in Guyana economy and particularly, the rice industry.
“Our Government is extremely pleased that you (Panama) are happy with the services we (GRDB) have been supplying since the commencement of our relationship… I would like to assure you that the GRDB will continue to provide the same excellent and professional service to your Government” he said.
He expressed satisfaction on behalf of the Government of Guyana, while underscoring the importance of Guyana accessing new rice markets.
“Government no longer buys produce or sets prices. In the past, price control led to the destruction of agriculture in Guyana. As such, the Ministry of Agriculture is taking the value-chain approach and wants farmers to be a part of this,” he said.
The Minister is assuring stakeholders in the Rice Industry that “all is not lost” with the loss of the Venezuelan Market.
Meantime, General Manager of the Guyana Rice Development Board, Mr. Nizam Hassan, said this move will auger well for the industry and production.
Additionally, he noted that opportunities appear to loom large for Guyana’s rice industry as enhanced efforts will be made by the Board to ensure that additional markets are secured.