President Choummaly Sayasone has called on the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry to pay attention to stopping the slash-and-burn cultivation and to poverty reduction of Lao people.
Addressing a meeting of officials of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry held at the ministry yesterday, President Choummaly said that the Agriculture and Forestry sector played an important role in the implementation of the national socio-economic development plan and the poverty reduction, mainly in promoting rice production by Lao people.
He urged Party members in the Agriculture and Forestry Sector to firmly grasp the directive of the Party on agriculture and forestry areas and recognise their role in fulfilling the national development strategy.
We consider the Agriculture and Forestry sector as an important element in the national economic system. It is aligned with the industrial and service development in the country, said the President.
Before the speech by President Choummaly Sayasone, Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Sitaheng Rasphone had reported the meeting about the ministry's 2010-2011 plan which mainly focuses on four key targets: the promotion of food production, the promotion of market-oriented production, the end to slash-and-burn cultivation practices and the promotion of sustainable forestry management.
Minister Sitaheng said that the 2010's rice yield was 3.26 million tonnes as compared to the set target of 3.3 million tonnes. However, it is still higher than the 2009's by three per cent.
As far as market-oriented production is concerned, priority has been given to the agricultural and forestry production as the country has high potential of production in this area as well as the cooperation with other regional countries.
Besides, the ministry pays attention to promoting the production of small and medium enterprises, land allocation and land ownership legalisation for the Lao people, added Mr. Sitaheng.