WINDHOEK - Namibia and Palestine signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on Friday to co-operate in areas such as the financing of joint agriculture projects, research in agro-technology, food security and more.
At the first-ever agreement signing ceremony on agriculture between the two countries here, Minister of Agriculture, Water and Forestry, John Mutorwa, noted that Namibia supports the just cause of the Palestinian people and their right to statehood.
“Our two countries largely share similar climatic conditions of arid to semi-arid climates, with limited arable land. It is thus imperative to share experiences and technical knowledge in agriculture, more so now with the challenge of climate change, which the entire world is facing,” he stressed.
According to Mutorwa, climate change has affected and is affecting Namibia to such an extent that government has identified the country to be highly vulnerable to the negative impact of climate change.
He indicated that for this reason, areas such as the expansion of agriculture and food production, agri-business and increased investments in agriculture, to mention but a few, are some of the projects that could be jointly implemented in the rural areas of Namibia and Palestine.
“Namibia will continue to support the legitimate struggle of the Palestinian people, to achieve their inalienable right to national self-determination and independence. We also support the Two-State nation, a Palestinian state living side-by-side with the state of Israel, in peace and harmony,” he noted.
Meanwhile, at the same occasion, Palestinian Minister of Agriculture, Walid Assaf, noted that Israel’s obstruction of water and sanitation to Palestinians has hampered agricultural development in his country.
He noted that without the sovereignty of the Palestinians over their natural resources, specifically land and water, optimal development would not happen.
The agreement will strengthen and consolidate co-operation between the two countries, which will exchange know-how in the fields of water, modern irrigation techniques, forestry development, controlling animal cross-border diseases and co-operation in plant protection, medicinal and aroma herbs and modern date planting techniques.
“We are ready to support Namibian farmers with the transfer of technology and training,” he noted.
A high-level Palestinian-Namibian Agricultural Committee was appointed to supervise the implementation of the agreement by introducing the co-operation priorities and vital projects for both ministries.
The committee is also responsible for setting up an action plan and timetable to ensure the implementation of the MoU.
The committee will meet once a year to review the progress of the agreed upon co-operation. – Nampa