Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - ASPIRE uplifts rural farming communities: agriculture minister

ASPIRE uplifts rural farming communities: agriculture minister

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Veng Sakhon and his officials on February 17 held a meeting with a working group from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), which is implementing the ASPIRE. VENG SAKHON VIA FACEBOOK

ASPIRE uplifts rural farming communities: agriculture minister

The Agriculture Services Programme for Innovation, Resilience and Extension (ASPIRE) has been a major driver of job creation, income empowerment, poverty reduction and food security in rural areas, according to Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Veng Sakhon.

The programme has armed many people with the technical knowledge and skills on growing “safe vegetables” – or those reasonably free of chemical and microbiological contaminants – raising chickens and fish, and has helped develop agricultural systems for the “new normal” era that are resilient to climate change, he said.

Sakhon made the remark on February 17 during a meeting with a working group from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), which is implementing the ASPIRE, according to a statement issued by the minister.

The IFAD website indicates that the 2014-2022 ASPIRE would have a total project cost of $86.25 million. The minister revealed that its extension, ASPIRE 2, is scheduled to be implemented from 2023-2027, and that $150 million had been earmarked for the programme from 2022-2027.

The minister said in the statement: “Through this programme, we’ve seen a growing number of shops and stalls selling safe vegetables in urban areas and communities.

“Most of their vegetables, fruits, fish and chicken are grown in communities or other groups receiving technical support from ASPIRE that is directly administered by the General Directorate of Agriculture and relevant institutions,” Sakhon said.

The IFAD working group reported encouraging results from evaluations of ASPIRE’s economic effectiveness, saying that for each dollar spent on implementation, beneficiaries in the 23 covered provinces substantially profit from the use of novel climate change-resilient techniques and sales of safe agricultural products developed by virtue of the programme, according to the statement.

The working group outlined its three primary missions – the 2022-2027 Country Strategy Opportunities Programme (COSOP); Agriculture Services Programme for an Inclusive Rural Economy and Agricultural Trade (ASPIRE-AT); and Building Adaptive Capacity through the Scaling-up of Renewable Energy Technologies in Rural Cambodia (SRET 2).

Sakhon voiced support for ASPIRE and its extension, and said he looks forward to working with IFAD on its missions to ensure the success of the programme, for the sake of its donors, direct beneficiaries and the government.

He also commented that beneficiaries should be sufficiently capable of utilising the techniques promoted by ASPIRE and ensuring the economic sustainability of their operations, even after the end of the programme.

MOST VIEWED

  • ‘Education’ a priority traffic-law penalty

    A top National Police official on June 21 neither rejected nor confirmed the authenticity of a leaked audio message, which has gone viral on social media, on a waiver of fines for a number of road traffic-related offences. General Him Yan, deputy National Police chief in

  • Pursat Ford assembly plant opens

    The Kingdom’s first Ford assembly plant was inaugurated on June 16 in Pursat province amid rising demand for brand-new vehicles among Cambodians. The facility is seen as a game changer for the domestic automobile industry, which could bring a wave of investors seeking to cash

  • Siem Reap’s $18M zoo said to educate public, help wildlife

    Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium Co Ltd has invested $18 million in a zoo in Siem Reap province, which will be opened in October to educate and promote animal conservation as well as attract national and international tourists. Currently, the Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium is building the

  • Volunteer scheme to foster ‘virtuous’ humanitarian spirit

    A senior education official said volunteer work contributes to solidarity and promotes a virtuous humanitarian spirit among the youth and communities. Serei Chumneas, undersecretary of state at the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, made the comment during the opening of a training programme called “

  • $50B infrastructure plan en route

    The government’s upcoming $50 billion,10-year infrastructure master plan will provide tremendous investment opportunities for domestic and foreign entities, transport experts and economists say. Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol revealed the plan to Japanese ambassador to Cambodia Masahiro Mikami on June 15. At

  • Chinese firms unveil preliminary results on metro, monorail for capital

    Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol and representatives from China Road and Bridge Corp (CRBC) and its parent company, the state-owned China Communications Construction Co Ltd (CCCC), met on June 24 for talks on results of the firms’ preliminary study on a potential metro