Oman seals Victoria food security pact
Muscat, March 4, 2014
Oman has signed an agreement with the Australian State of Victoria for collaboration on food production besides getting its expertise in water management and for partnerships in agribusiness.
The Australian State of Victoria Minister for Agriculture and Food Security Peter Walsh and Oman's Agriculture and Fisheries Minister Dr Fuad Jaffer Al Sajwani also agreed to develop a memorandum of understanding centred on food production, research and development and education.
As part of the Victorian 'Super Trade Mission to the Middle East', Walsh met Dr Fuad and other senior government officials in the capital Muscat.
Walsh said during the meeting the officials expressed a strong view that it was time to take the relationship between Oman and Victoria to the ‘next level’ for their mutual benefit.
"Oman is very wisely focused on its future food security and is looking to Victoria not only for more food but for expertise in water management and for partnerships in agribusiness," he stated.
According to him, Oman is one of several countries that make up the Mena region, the second most important market for Victorian food and fibre exporters.
Exports of Victorian food and fibre to the region increased 15 per cent in 2012-13 to A$1.25 billion ($1.1 billion).
Oman recognises Victoria as a home of world-class agricultural research that may play an important role in helping to lift productivity in its own farm sector, sad the visiting minister.
"With Australian universities already a popular choice for many Omani students, their Government is also looking to Victoria for vocational education and training in agricultural and veterinary science," he said.
"For all these reasons we have agreed to formalise our relationship as part of a concerted focus on mutually beneficial joint ventures, partnerships, collaborative research and educational agreements," stated the Victorian minister.
"We want to be seen as a long term partner to Oman supplying reliable and high quality food year in, year out," he added.-TradeArabia News Service