South Korea to spend Shs7.5b on agricultural research in Uganda

The director Korea Program on International Agriculture [KOPIA] - Uganda, Dr Park Taeseon stresses a point during the interview. PHOTO/DAVID VOSH AJUNA

What you need to know:

  • South Korea intends to boost Agricultural research with about Shs7.5b next year.
  • Covid-19 disrupted KOPIA funded research activities in Uganda this year. 

South Korea through the Korea Programme on International Agriculture [KOPIA] will next year inject over Shs7.5 billion in agricultural-based research to boost modern agriculture.

“This year [2020], KOPIA injected about Shs3.6b in Agricultural research. We intend to double the capital injection up to a tune of not less than Shs7.5b next year,” said Dr Park Taeseon, the director KOPIA Uganda.

Dr Taeseon said that the coronavirus pandemic which has so far killed more than 1.46 million people and infected nearly 63 million people worldwide, dealt their 2020 research projects a huge blow.  

“Our ability to put in much more funds was greatly affected by Covid-19. Besides, because of Covid-19, we were unable to fly in researchers from Korea and other world countries to come here [Uganda] and provide expert knowledge,” he said at the weekend during the review of the last edition of the virtual ‘Seeds of Gold event that was at the National Agricultural Research Centre (NARO) at Kawanda.

KOPIA country director Dr Park Taeseon on the sidelines of the virtual 2020 Seeds of Gold said the research projects will expand to cover various Agricultural practices in Uganda. PHOTO/COURTESY.

It focused on banana and organic vegetable farming.

He said that the primary target for the research projects will be on food crops. 

“This project will take on crops like rice, cereal, and vegetable farming but in the future it will expand to other crops like oranges, chicken and other agricultural practices. We are partnering with several agricultural research centres, universities and other related entities in the country,” he said. 

The research projects will be seeking to better Agricultural practices in the interest of having high levels of production. PHOTO/DAVID VOSH AJUNA

According to Dr Taeseon, KOPIA projects are a consolidation of bilateral agricultural cooperation.

“We are doing this in order to improve on production and quality by sharing our advanced agricultural technology with countries like Uganda, Congo and Rwanda,” he said. 

NARO director, Dr Wilberforce Tushemereirwe said the virtual 2020 Seeds of Gold was an opportunity for them to showcase what they have, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

An expert disseminates knowledge during the 2nd last edition of the televised-virtual 2020 Seeds of Gold at the NARO centre, Kawanda, November 28, 2020. The last edition will be happening on December 12 [Read below for details]. PHOTO/DAVID VOSH AJUNA

Nation Media Group’s senior activations and promotions officer, Mr Joshua Watwaluma revealed that the last edition of this year’s virtual Seeds of Gold will be held on December 12, 2020- focusing on dairy and maize farming at Nakyesesa Agricultural Institute Namulonge, Gayaza in Wakiso District. 

The Seeds of Gold farm clinics; organised by NTV Uganda and Daily Monitor turned virtual this year after the outbreak of Covid-19.