President underscores researchers role in agriculture transformation

President underscores researchers role in agriculture transformation

AMMAPresident Dr. Mulatu Teshome said that the agriculture sector, apart from being the mainstay and income generating to the majority of the population, it has peerless role in ensuring food security, speeding up agro- industry and foreign trade growth and economic development in general. 
The Ethiopian Institute of Agriculture Research (EIAR) has to work hard more than ever to assist in the country's agricultural sector transformation and industrial development and releasing globally competitive crop, vegetable and fruit varieties,among others. The Institute has to be meet its international research standards equipped with modern technologies, research facilities, broaden its research horizons and related modern agricultural research inputs, the President said.
Opening at a two-day Researchers' Meeting organized in connection with EIAR 50th Anniversary yesterday, President Dr. Mulatu said that EIAR and other institutions have conducted various agro-ecology researches and contributed a lot to the development of the agriculture sector. It has released various improved varieties of crop spices, agricultural technologies, increased agricultural production and productivity, generating new agricultural technologies ,among others. for the last 50 years. 
The President said citing global forecast that due to high population growth and lifestyle changes, demand for agricultural produce will increase. Hence, increasing the agricultural products is crucial. A strong and international standard research backup and strong technological development is needed.
The country's agricultural production and productivity is found at lower level due to unsolved challenges in the sector. Thus, research institutions are expected to build their research and new technologies release capabilities to strengthen the nation's economic development, Dr. Mulatu said. 
The President further said that EIAR has to work hard to solve the country's agricultural development bottlenecks by adopting new technologies to transform the nation's agriculture sector. 
Farming and Natural Resources Development Minister Tefera Deribew on his part said that the agriculture sector has been playing a key role in the country's economy and becoming a base for the other sectors. Recognizing its significance, the government has designed agriculture development strategy which enabled the country register double digit rapid economic growth. 
The Minister also said that the role of EIAR researchers in this regard is tremendous.

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