| Radio New Zealand
PORT MORESBY - Papua New Guinea's treasurer, Ian Ling-Stuckey, is encouraging citizens to work their land and develop agriculture ventures.
Mr Ling-Stuckey said significant funding had been allocated to the agriculture sector in the 2020 budget, in particular to assist cocoa, coffee and fresh produce development.
This includes K200 million funding for small to medium enterprises which covers agricultural operations.
The government said it was trying to boost agricultural production and increase incomes of rural families.
It had also set aside funding for downstream processing of coconut products, the livestock industry and to assist oil palm smallholders.
Mr Ling-Stuckey urged Papua New Guineans "to work their land and not expect the resource sector to raise their living standards.
"We've seen that between 2014 and 2019, real living standards have dropped from 5,380 kina to 4860 kina, a drop of 520 kina per person.
"This fall in living standards was driven by poor government policies and a lack of focus on the agriculture sector," he said.
"Growing the agricultural sector is the key to raising living standards and creating better opportunities for the rural majority."