Nepal striving for self-sufficiency in rice


Kathmandu, Oct. 25: Secretary at the Ministry of Agricultural Development (MoAD) Uday Chandra Thakur Monday said that the government had accorded priority to increasing productivity and production of paddy to make the country self-reliant in rice production within two years.

“The ministry  and its concerned bodies are implementing various agricultural programmes to increase agricultural productivity and production by providing high yield seeds and agricultural inputs to the farmers,” he said while addressing a workshop entitled ‘Accelerating the Adoption of Stress-Tolerant Rice Varieties (ASTV)’ organised by the smallholder farmers in Nepal and Cambodia. USAID is supporting the programme.

“No doubt Nepal needs technical know-how and skill enhancement support projects to make our effort a success,” Thakur said.

He expressed his hope that the USAID-ASTV project would provide support to increasing the productivity of agricultural crops, especially rice, by distributing high quality seeds to the farmers.

International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) is producing improved rice seeds, distributing of drought and flood-tolerant rice seed for free, and encouraging the use of modern technologies and enhancement of farmers’ capacity and skills in 22 districts of Nepal.

For this, IRRI is working with USAID-ASTV, MoAD, the Department of Agriculture and Nepal Agricultural Research Council (NARC).

“The government has selected Jhapa district as a super zone for rice production under the Prime Minister Agriculture Commercialisation Project,” he said.

Besides, the ministry is implementing the 20-year Agriculture Development Strategy (ADS) for the development of this sector, secretary Thakur said.

Stating that agriculture has been playing a vital role in the Nepalese economy, contributing approximately one third of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and employing nearly two-thirds of the country’s population, he said that the government had focused on commercialisation, mechanisation and industrialisation of this sector.

“Imbalance use of chemical fertilisers, lack of agriculture inputs and proper irrigation facilities and quality seeds are affecting the agricultural output,” he said. 

Rice is the major agriculture product that contributed around 21 per cent in Agriculture Gross Domestic Product and 7 per cent in the GDP of Nepal.

In fiscal year 2015/16, the rice was planted in 1.4 million hectares of land and 4.3 million tons of rice was produced. Per hectare productivity of rice stood at 3.2 metric tons.

“The major objective of IRRI, financially supported by USAID-ASTV project, is to minimise poverty, hunger and increase the income of poor families by distributing drought and flood-tolerant improved quality seeds,” said Dr. Yubak Dhoj G.C, director general of the Department of Agriculture.

The project is being implemented in 4 districts of western region, 10 districts of mid-western region and 6 districts of far-western development region with high rate of poverty and food insecurity.

In these districts, the female members have to support the families for a livelihood because of the absence of male members who have gone abroad for employment.

He further said that the DoAD, NARC and IRRI were conducting research on new rice varieties introduced in Nepal by the IRRI as early paddy in order to estimate yield increment.

On the occasion, Dr. Abdelbagi M. Ismail, overall project leader and principal scientist, IRRI-Philippines, said limited capacity of seeds system and insufficient high quality seeds, insufficient and poor quality inputs and timely delivery were key constraints for improving rice productivity.

He said that the objective of the project was to enhance and stabilise rice productivity by promoting, producing and distributing seeds of high yield to the farmers and provide needs-based training for stakeholders on quality seeds production and processing and storage.

Last year, the IRRI had distributed about 252 metric tons of different improved rice varieties to more than 50,000 rice farmers of 22 districts.

Related News

Bakar-Eid today

Kathmandu, Sept. 13: The Muslims community across the country are observing the Bakar-Eid with much fanfare Tuesday. The Muslims people visit the mosques, offer prayers to Allah, observed Namaj and exchange greetings to each others in the festival.  The festival falls on the 70th day of the Ramadan, the nine…

Policeman held on charge of raping mentally ill woman

   Dhangadi, Sept 24:  Police have arrested a policeman for allegedly raping a mentally challenged woman at Campus Chowk in Dhangadi district.   According to the District Police Office (DPO) , Dhangadi, Gaursingh Faral, allegedly raped the woman taking her to a nearby bush on Friday.   The locals caught…

Energy crisis major setback for urban development

Kathmandu, Sept. 30:Experts have raised concerns about inadequate infrastructures and amenities in sprawling urban areas. Speaking at a talk programme on ‘Urban challenges and the role of private sector in Nepal’, they said that the new urban areas should be developed in a planned manner and should be equipped with…

Animal sacrifice can never be religion

Pokhara, Oct 3: Speakers at a programme held on the occasion of the International Day of Non- Violence expressed a joint commitment to discourage animal sacrifices in temples and religious shrines in name of religion. During the interaction on minimizing the scale of animal sacrifices held by Woman for Social…

Less complaints filed at help desks: Police

Kathmandu, Oct. 5: Citizens’ Help Desks (CHDs) that were established ahead of the festive seasons are receiving less public complaints than what the police had expected. The Nepal Police in the wake of the festive mood of Dashain, Tihar and Chhath had set up nine CHDs at major junctions of…

At least 50 hurt in Tanahu bus accident

Damauli, Oct 6: A least 50 people were injured when a passenger bus met with an accident at Amreni of Byas Municipality-1, Tahanu today.  A bus (Ga 1 Kha 4153) en route to Damauli from Muglin veered off the road and fell into a paddy field. Overtaking was suspected as…


Find Us on Facebook

From Social

Tokyo (Japan), Sept. 13: A new leadership assumed responsibilities at the Non Resident Nepalese Association (NRNA), Japan on Sunday. The new office bearers took oath of office and secrecy after a long fought battle resulting from dissatisfaction from those who…

Lama led officials assume responsibility in NRNA Japan