Gov’t is on track with CEMA Revitalisation Program

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The Government has convened a Consultation Meeting with the Private Sector Cocoa and Copra Exporters on Friday 24th July 2020 at CEMA Head Office in Honiara.

The consultation was made by the CEMA Cabinet Sub Committee, Technical Working Group Members with assistance and support from the CEMA Management Team.

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The purpose of the consultation meeting is to develop a revitalisation strategy towards improving the current Commodities Export Marketing Authority (CEMA) regulatory and commercial functions.

The meeting outcome was successful in that the Exporters expressed their desire to have a marketing authority that is responsive to the needs of our rural economy and supports them in connecting to the rural farmers.

This is part of the Democratic Coalition Government for Advancement (DGCA)’s priority policy Action Plan 2019- 2023.

The DCGA, under its fundamental and productive sector reforms stated the intention to continue on with the revitalisation of CEMA to encourage rural farmers to fully participate in the development of the rural economy and the nation.

Speaking during the launch of the consultation last week and on behalf of the Chairman of the CEMA Cabinet Sub Committee, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Commerce, Industry, Labour and Immigration, Mr Riley Mesepitu acknowledged the presence of cocoa and copra exporters, buyers and agents as an important part of the process to revitalize the marketing authority.

According to Riley Mesepitu, the thoughts and experiences shared during the consultation will form the basis of any proposed plans and strategies to revitalize and improve CEMA to deliver to expectations and to achieve the Government’s desire to reach out to remoter farmers and strengthen the local economy.

The DCGA believed that the revitalisation of CEMA is crucial towards creating jobs and access to income to the rural populace.

“Prior to CEMA liberalisation in 2002, the rural economy was alive and thriving with cocoa and coconut farmers actively participated in production of these commodities.

The inflow of cash in the rural economy was active and employment was readily available for our rural youths and women,” the Chairman recalled.

Mr. Riley on behalf of the CEMA Cabinet Sub Committee Chairman further encouraged all to work together in partnership to develop the domestic economy “and grow our rural sector to ensure that our younger generation and growing population remains in our villages to provide the much needed labour force to work on farms and tilt their land.”

He also encouraged the participants to be creative and innovative in doing business to strengthen the rural sector and improve lives in the villages.

The Presenter of the CEMA revitalisation plan Mr. Martin Housanau highlighted the agro business models and added value chains that is under consideration to improve the current CEMA functions. Mr. Housanau is the Director of CEMA Cabinet Sub Committee and Chairman of the CEMA Technical Working Group.

The program involved Senior Government representatives, members of the CEMA technical working committee, CEMA Cabinet Sub Committee and a total 21 representatives from Private Sector cocoa and copra exporters, buyers and agents.

The DCGA is fully committed to revitalise CEMA and continue on with the delivery of its ongoing and prospecting policy priorities in the interest of nation building, economic advancement, national stability, peace and progress.

OPMC PRESS RELEASE

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