Lautem, 26 January 2015 – His Excellency the President of the Republic, Taur Matan Ruak, this Monday inaugurated a seed production centre at the administrative post of Lospalos, Lautem municipality.
In his first 2015 visit to the districts, the Head of State was accompanied by the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Mariano Asanami Sabino, the Secretary of State for the Promotion of Equality, Idelta Rodrigues, and the Ambassador of the United States to Timor-Leste, Karen Stanton.
“I ask you to work together with them. Your success is their success as well, it’s ours and our country’s. We want you to have money so you can build a nice place to live, we want you to be successful, we don’t want you to worry when your children go to school,” the Head of State told all those present at the ceremony.
“I take this occasion to thank the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries. I also wish to thank the Government and the Embassy of the United States, because the United States continues to contribute towards the development of activities which our citizens can benefit from,” he added.
On the same occasion, American Ambassador Karen Stanton said that the United States is delighted to be able to financially contribute to the development of agribusiness in Timor-Leste which will have an impact on national economic development.
Minister of Agriculture Mariano Sabino told participants that the seeds will be distributed to the farmers in Lautém, Baucau and Viqueque, and planted on empty land, thus protecting soil fertility and collecting rainwater.
This centre, built on a 25-hectare plot, produces moringa seeds, coffee Robusta, bell peppers, cocoa, cassava and tea, among others.
Before the inauguration ceremony, the Head of State visited the centre’s facilities. In this visit, His Excellency was accompanied by the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, the Secretary of State for the Promotion of Equality, representatives of the local authorities, and also representatives of both the NCBA and Cooperativa Café Timor.
At the end of the ceremony, the Ambassador of the United States planted a tree before proceeding with the signing of the commemorative plaque by the Head of State.
The centre is the result of a close partnership between the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, the NCBA and the Cooperativa Café Timor through USAID.
Present at the inauguration ceremony were also several farmers, local community members and students.