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St. Lucia & China sign agreements for Agriculture and Health

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Contact: John Emmanuel

Thursday, January 16, 2003 - The existing technical cooperation agreement between the Government of St. Lucia and the People’s Republic of China was further strengthened on Wednesday, January 15, 2003 with the signing of two Memoranda of Understanding (MOU).

The agreements will foster developments in the fields of agriculture and health. Agriculture Minister Honourable Calixte George says under the agreement, the Chinese Government will provide technical assistance in advancing agricultural production on the island. “The assistance is really geared towards modernizing agricultural techniques while utilizing the best technologies available in the commercialization of particular crops. There are several aspects to this, one deals with improvements to the Germ Nursery and the introduction of several new species of crops all in aid of our agricultural sector,” said Minister George.

Other Agricultural areas to benefit from the latest assistance package include the Ministry’s Mushroom Project, the Cut Flower industry and Farm Irrigation projects across the country.

Health Minister Honourable Damian Greaves who also signed an M.O.U with the Chinese Government on behalf of St. Lucia, says under the agreement, some two million dollars will be provided in the first instance for the start-up work on the proposed new Psychiatric Hospital. Work on the hospital Minister Greaves explains will begin soon, as construction plans are at an advanced stage. “In the agreement there is of course the general situation whereby the People’s Republic of China will be providing the funding for the psychiatric hospital but they will also be assisting with the designing of the new facility,” Greaves said.

Already officials of the Ministry of Physical Development and Environment and other individuals involved in the planning and construction of the new Psychiatric Hospital are working feverishly in terms of the design and the general physical layout of the project.

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