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Public and civic initiatives to develop agriculture


As part of relentless efforts to boost agriculture in Lebanon, the caretaker minister of agriculture, Abbas Mortada, signed on December 18, a memorandum of cooperation with Abdallah Wardat, the Food and Agriculture Organization, FAO representative in Lebanon. Mortada stressed the need to develop the sector with the help of international agencies, namely the World Food Program. He said agriculture is the main productive sector that can improve food security and contribute to the provision of food at acceptable prices, in light of the economic crisis and the increasing exchange rate of the US dollar that negatively impact the import of food and the citizen’s purchasing power. Meanwhile, the international humanitarian organization, Concern Worldwide, and in cooperation with Hweish Municipality, Akkar, launched last Saturday, an agricultural initiative in the area. The project, funded by the US State Department Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration (PRM), aims to help farmers invent an alternative cultivation of the Oreganum syriacum kind of thyme. Also, in the Shouf town of Mresti, the project ‘The provision of irrigation water and crop cultivation using advanced technology’ was launched in partnership with the Italian OIKOS foundation, the University of Toronto and the Shouf Cedar Nature Reserve, and with funding by the EU. The project aims to rehabilitate three mountain ponds in the town with modern irrigation networks, in addition to improving farmers’ water management capacities and raising awareness on the rational use of water in the Reserve’s environs. (Al Diyar, December 19, 21, 27, 2020)

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