Seychelles and Malaysia Discuss High-Tech Innovation in Agriculture Sector

Seychelles and Malaysia are exploring potential areas to collaborate with the aim to achieve food sustainability in the western Indian Ocean island nation through the provision of technical help.

The honorary consul of Malaysia, Kabilan Muniandy, led a delegation to Seychelles recently and met with high level officials in the agricultural sector.

Among the areas discussed were training for the students from the Seychelles Institute of Agriculture and Horticulture (SIAH) and technicians in the field so that the country can achieve food security.

The principal secretary for agriculture, Keven Nancy, said the visit was organised so that the experts could get a firsthand experience of the agricultural sector in Seychelles.

This will help in identifying the country's needs as well as the level of research and technology required to help increase production and reduce importation.

Seychelles imports around 90 percent of its food and has in the past couple of years started refining its plans for food security.

Nancy explained that Seychelles was looking to develop new agricultural techniques such as tissue farming and hydroponics.

Also discussed was the possibility of professionals in the domain of high-tech agriculture visiting the country to share knowledge on the operation of the technology to offer long-term technical help to local practitioners.

"We want to engage in these new technologies linked to increasing agricultural production and to do that we have to be innovative and use technology and science. We are pushing for any type of high-tech farming in the country through the use of technology as this is the way forward to make agriculture more sustainable," he added.

The training for SIAH students and other professionals in the agricultural sector in Seychelles will be held in May year with the help of a Malaysian institution - Quest International University. Already several students from Seychelles attend these courses.

The head of Quest International University, Nicholas Goh, said, "We have a very strong biotech programme at the University. Since we have Seychellois students, we want to talk to the minister and others as to why not train them to come back and help the nation."

During its working visit, the Malaysian delegation met with Flavien Joubert, who has an agriculture portfolio. The delegation also visited SIAH, the Anse Boileau Research Centre, the soil and diagnostic laboratory, and the animal and plant health laboratory in Grand Anse Mahe.

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