Additional allocation needed for agricultural park projects

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KUCHING: The federal government was told to support the setting up of smart farming parks in Sarawak.

Betong MP Datuk Robert Lawson Chuat said the plan to build nine smart farming parks throughout Sarawak was to increase the production of agro-food crops.

He said the programme is also an initiative to boost smart farming activities in order to attract more youth participation into the agricultural sector.

“Until now, the Sarawak government has approved an allocation to develop three of the nine parks.

“Therefore, the federal government needs to help to provide additional allocation to develop the park which will also be equipped with the latest Internet of Things (IoT) technology, under the 12th Malaysia Plan (12MP).

“The estimated cost is RM25 million for a park,” he said in Parliament on Thursday.

He said Sarawak also had great potential in increasing the production of beef, mutton and buffalo meat.

“With the status of a disease-free state and vast land, Sarawak is able to contribute to the country’s growing demand for meat,” he added.

Chuat requested that the allocation be increased under the 12MP to purchase quality breeds of cattle, buffaloes and towards increasing meat self-sufficiency and reducing dependence on imports.

“Until now, the subsistence level of Sarawak’s beef is around 15 percent with only around 17,000 cows and buffaloes.

“Sarawak aims to increase the number of cows and buffaloes to 150,000 to achieve 50 percent meat self-sufficiency by 2030,” he said.

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