Asia Pacific nations to share info on agri-development

Kathmandu, November 9:

Participants of the Training Workshop on National Agricultural Information Systems (NAIS) recently held at the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT), Bangkok, Thailand, organised by the Asia Pacific Association of Agricultural Research Institutions (APAARI) have agreed to share information, knowledge on agri-development and success stories and technologies. The workshop was held from 1-5 November.

“The main objective of this workshop was to train officers in the principles of information and communication management and in identifying and developing essential components of their respective NAIS,” said Dr Bhola Man Singh Basnet, spokesperson of Nepal Agricultural Research Council (NARC). Basnet presented a status paper including a list of experts in Nepal. Ten countries of the Asia Pacific region, including Nepal participated in the workshop.

According to Dr Basnet, during the workshop National Information Nodal Point (NINP) of all ten participating countries were also identified.

Two participants from each country of the developing National Agricultural Research System of Asia-Pacific region, resource persons from APAARI, AIT, Global Fund on Agricultural Research and FAO, other region’s RAIS managers and representatives of regional ICT/ICM in Agriculture Research and Development, participated in the workshop.

This collaborative effort of APAARI, Global Fund for Agricultural Research, AIT and Food and Agricultural Organization brought together complementary resources to assist in developing NARS of the Asia-Pacific region by training appropriate officers in ICM and building NAIS.

In the workshop, trainees were assisted in developing a prototype NAIS of their respective NARS as a delivery medium for national Agricultural RD information and databases. At the end of the workshop, these NAIS will be uploaded on APARIS.

A technology exchange programme was conducted at Chiangmai — a hill area in Thailand where Nepali fishery experts went to train farmers in rainbow trout farming. Thai experts visited the regional agricultural research station at Tarahara of Sunsari to teach Nepali fish farmers about freshwater prawn farming.

After the end of the workshop, some 20 success stories were published in CDs that include Nepal’s rainbow trout fishery, India’s hybrid cotton, Iran’s wheat crop and Malaysian palm oil, among others.