Western Australian agriculture will be showcased to a senior ministerial delegation from Botswana this week, to help build commercial alliances and investment in agriculture, Agriculture Minister Kim Chance said today.
Mr Chance said the six-day visit, from yesterday until September 3, would further strengthen the links and future opportunities between Botswana and WA’s agricultural sectors.
The delegation includes Botswana Agriculture Minister, Hon Johnie Swartz, the Botswana High Commissioner, His Excellency Molowsiwa Selenpeng and leading agricultural scientists.
Mr Chance said Botswana’s economy was based on mining, particularly diamonds, and tourism, but there was significant potential for increased grain, fruit, vegetable and livestock production.
“Botswana’s agricultural industry, through the High Commissioner and the Minister of Agriculture, have expressed an interest in the development of an alliance in agriculture with WA,” he said.
“This visit by Hon Johnie Swartz will promote that alliance, providing opportunities for the export of WA goods and services.
“The Gallop Government is providing new opportunities for Western Australians.”
WA Department of Agriculture executive director David Hartley explored possible links during his attendance at the Australian-Southern Africa Business Council conference in Kasane earlier this year.
As part of that visit, Mr Hartley was a guest of the Botswana Ministry of Agriculture and had the opportunity to visit key agricultural centres in Botswana and develop a shared understanding of areas for future co-operation.
This week in WA, the Botswanan delegation will meet with representatives of the State’s universities, farmer organisations and key agricultural bodies including the Grain Pool, Co-operative Bulk Handling and the Australian Quarantine Inspection Service.
Regional visits have also been organised to the Department of Agriculture’s Centre for Cropping Systems in Northam and farming enterprises at Geraldton and Carnarvon.
Minister's office: 9213 6700