Government introduces Agriculture Forestry Policy to boost agro-forest products

Kathmandu, July 25: The government has brought the 'National Agriculture Forestry Policy, 2019', envisioning to contribute to the national prosperity through the development, promotion, expansion and commercialization of agriculture-forestry.

The policy, prepared by a joint team of the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development and the Ministry of Forests and Environment, was recently approved by the Council of Ministers.
Pradip Chandra Bhattarai, senior livestock development officer at the Policy Coordination Section at the Ministry of Agriculture, said the policy has the objective of increasing the land productivity as well as the production of agriculture, livestock and forest-based products through the multiple use of land.

Similarly, the policy has the objective of conserving the environment and biodiversity by minimizing the pressure on forest, maintaining the quality of soil, promoting climate resilient environmental system and securing the food security of the local people as well as livelihood, employment and income-generating opportunities through the intensive promotion of agriculture forestry.

Likewise, the other objectives of the policy are contributing to the economy through commercialization and mobilization of investment opportunities in agriculture-forestry, and conducting study and research and capacity enhancement in the agriculture forestry.

The policy has outlined the policies and strategies as prioritization and incentivization of commercial and collective farming system of agro-forestry, carrying out intensive research in agro-forestry and facilitation of the value chain and market access of farmers.

It is stated in the policy that strategy would be adopted for promoting the industries based on agro-forestry products and their market management, for providing financial incentives in the agro-forestry sector, for giving priority to the agro-forestry system on unused, fallow and rangeland and for developing and promoting place-specific agro-forestry models on the basis of suitability.

Maize weeding machine being used to weed maize at Sonpuruwa, Rajpur Rural Municipality-5 in Dang district, which is being developed as super zone for maize production under the Prime Minister Agriculture Modernisation Project, July 25, 2019.

The Government of Nepal will make provision of the Agro-Forestry Inter Ministry Coordination Committee at the centre for the implementation of this policy. This committee would be coordinated by the Secretary at the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development and have representation of all the stakeholder bodies.

The province and local levels will make the required institutional arrangements on the basis of local needs for the execution of the policy, the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development said. Likewise, all the three levels of government will allocate the required budget and formulate appropriate programmes for the effective implementation of the policy.

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