Govt promise to ease water woes for farmers on south coast


August 24, 2016
JC Hutchinson

J.C. Hutchinson, minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, said on Monday that the Government will be examining the most productive lands in the southern belt of the island with a view to fixing irrigation problems.

"Our focus will be on the plains of St Catherine, Clarendon and South St Elizabeth, inclusive of the cane lands in south St Catherine and Clarendon," Hutchinson said.

He pointed out that issues such as inadequate water supply and climate change are negatively impacting the agricultural sectors.

On the campaign trail last year, Prime Minister Andrew Holness said that a JLP government would seek international funding to implement a massive water-improvement programme across the island.

"In the same way the Government has found money, through either developing an investment package or borrowing to build Highway 2000 and to complete the North South Highway, so too we must treat water as a priority for investment," Holness said.

The JLP leader said that the investment would lead to a minimum 15 per cent increase in agriculture over the next five years, which would result in at least one per cent of economic growth.

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