Preparation for 2019 agriculture census begins


SeruiratuThe Ministry of Agriculture has begun reparations for the Agriculture Statistics for Policy and also to further discuss enhancement of Data Collection Methodology and plan for the upcoming 2019 Agriculture Census.
This follows a 3-day work on the census which began today in Nadi hosted by the ministry in partnership with the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).
Opened by the Minister for Agriculture Hon. Inia Seruiratu, the workshop aims to significantly increase the availability and quality of Agricultural and Rural Statistics that is produced by a sustainable agricultural statistical system with appropriate institutional, human and financial capacity.
“This is an opportunity to remind us again on the importance of our role as producer of Agriculture Statistics in Fiji’s Statistical System, therefore there is a urgent need for us to continuously collaborate not as an individual player in the System but as a team focusing on achieving that same goal of disseminating timely and quality information,” he said.
“I hope that your plan for the 2019 Agriculture Census will be centered around this new approach which should improve collection of data on crops and livestock and enable establishment of a sustainable Agricultural Statistical System.”  
Fiji’s Agriculture Sector plays an important role towards the economy of the country in terms of Food Security, Employment Creation, increasing foreign exchange earnings and contribution to the annual gross domestic products (GDP).
However, policy making and strategic management of the Industry suffers from a lack of access to reliable production and market volume data.
“Government recognizes the need for more consistent and quality data and has prioritised the improvement of data collection and dissemination processes to address the urgent need of a regular flow of consistent agricultural information for planners, policy and decision makers,” Minister Seruiratu said.
Through the workshop, the Ministry hopes to achieve:
·             A set of Agriculture Baseline Data that is disseminated and improved capability to use Agriculture Statistics in Policy
·             A new Sampling frame to ensure methodological soundness of all future agricultural surveys
·             An evaluation and redesign of the production survey to provide a regular source of reliable production
The workshop ends on Friday.


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