Agriculture not totally wiped out by Erika Drigo says

Drigo said agriculture was not completely destroyed
Drigo said agriculture was not completely destroyed

Although the agricultural sector suffered a massive $122.8-million worth of damage during the passage of Tropical Storm Erika, it was not completely destroyed, Agriculture Minister, Johnson Drigo, has said.

Addressing a “Dialogue on Agriculture: A Post Erika Strategy” forum currently underway at the Atlantique Resort and Spa in Anse De Mai, Drigo said the industry will not have to start from a clean slate.

“Let me say that in spite of the widespread destruction to farm and farm access roads caused by Tropical Storm Erika, we are not starting with a clean slate,” Drigo said. “Available statistics informs us that agriculture contributes some 17 percent for the country’s gross domestic product or 21 percent of the active work force.”

He went on to say that in the budget address of the current fiscal year, projections for the sector had revealed that there would be an increase in contribution of agriculture to GDP to an overall growth to 2.5 percent, but Erika has changed all that.

“The passage of Erika has reversed all of this,” he said. “Recent assessments have indicated, that GDP growth for 2015 is now projected to be 0.8 per cent, rather than 1.9 per cent higher than 2014 in real terms.”

Meantime the Agriculture Minister noted that government has planned some strategies for the sector and many of which were outlined in the 2015-16 budget.

“And today some of the key pillars from the plan example coffee and cocoa, banana and plantain, root crops, vegetables, livestock and the abattoir, bayleaf and other essentials oils will form part of the framework for this dialogue,” he noted.

He said a World Bank report indicates that damages and losses to agriculture at $122.8 million and out of these losses, the damage to road infrastructure amounted to $57.6-million.

Drigo said work has begun in tackling the damage to the farm access roads and said when this is completed, it will take the country back to the situation in which it was before Erika.

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  1. Anthony P. Ismael
    October 14, 2015

    “He said a World Bank report indicates that damages and losses to agriculture at $122.8 million and out of these losses, the damage to road infrastructure amounted to $57.6-million.” So in other words, agriculture suffered losses of: $65.2 million dollars.
    It’s difficult to decipher reality from fiction with these numbers. I read earlier figures stating that agriculture suffered losses of well over $200 million dollars. Why not separate the total losses for crops and infrastructure. In so doing, readers will gain an accurate picture of the damage that was done to this sector. This entire statement is misleading.

  2. Laughter the best medicine
    October 13, 2015

    Agriculture not totally wiped out by Erika certainly not we have Manicou Drigo says
    Do we still have Fig dasheen ,yams & plantain? If yes we can make a broth.

  3. fedup
    October 13, 2015

    Ericka did not wipe out anything. It was wiped out long before that. Ericka just exposed everything. most incompetent minister of agriculture in the history of Dominica.

  4. Nigel
    October 13, 2015

    That simple? Just cut through the dirt roads and everything is back how it was. shouldnt we be trying to make it better than it was to prevent future disasters like what just happened???????

  5. Alex
    October 13, 2015

    There are a few other things I should mention: Many local vegetable gardens have become stressed due to semi-drought conditions and lack of irrigation systems. Also the sea temperature around Dominica has reached 30.1 C. and should be considered at Level Two (the highest category) Coral Bleaching Event Level as has been declared by Antigua and Barbuda. See: I don’t need to tell anyone what death of coral reefs does to fishing.

  6. caretaker
    October 13, 2015

    So Mr. Drigo when will farmers get their little pittance nah? It’s more than a month now. What about the farmers that only do farming for a living? Its time you give them a little something.

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