St Kitts and Nevis: Prime Minister Dr Timothy Harris has conducted one of his regular visits to the Public Market in the capital of Federation-Basseterre earlier the morning of Saturday, March 12, 2022, in a show of support to the nation’s farmers. In his visit, PM Harris applauded local farmers and vendors for contributing to the substantial progress being made in the overall advancement of the agriculture sector.
Prime Minister Harris has been accompanied by Permanent Secretary in Ministry of Agriculture, Ron Dublin-Collins, and Ian Chapman, Crops Programme Leader in the Department of Agriculture at the Public Market.
While sharing his experiences after visiting the local market, PM Harris stated that he is pretty impressed with implementing the strategy in order the security and save the food across the Federation of St Kitts and Nevis.
“On every visit to the public market here in Basseterre, I feel very comforted and honoured that we are on the right path, and by receiving and trading of agriculture goods in St Kitts, it feels very good. However, there is a long journey yet to go, but still, the agricultural sector witnessed substantial progress,” PM Harris noted.
PM Harris further emphasized that he has received such a warm welcome when visiting the public market and added that It was a wonderful opportunity to meet a wide cross-section of the community, gaining insights on how to improve the quality of life for the people of St Kitts and Nevis.
Dr Harris cited that he was particularly pleased to know that almost every product sold at the Basseterre Public Market was locally grown.
“I feel a sense that the policies that my government has put together; the stimulus packages which the farmers have benefitted from and all the other support that we have given – both at the level of technical advice and on the procurement of items to assist our farmers – that our investments are providing a dividend for our country,” underscored prime minister.
Further, Prime Minister has also witnessed the steady flow of persons who are visiting the Public Market of Basseterre to patronize the local vendors. He recognized the flow of persons as an indication that the market is “serving its purpose”.
With his market visit coming on the heels of the global observation of International Women’s Day, Prime Minister Harris also commended women farmers and vendors across St. Kitts and Nevis for their contributions to the sector.
“I want to hail sister Victoria [Baucom], one of our farmers who believe in the sustainability of agriculture and has been doing great work in the sector. So Victoria, I want to laud you, commend your efforts in farming, and in hailing you, I recall that we recently celebrated International Women’s Day—I want to commend all the female farmers and all the people who are vending with a sizable number of them being womenfolk as they have uplifted their sector,” Dr Harris added.
As part of the build-out of the agricultural sector and as part of the attempt to decentralize vending from the Basseterre area, the Department of Agriculture is investing heavily in its community market initiative, with the Bourryeau Community Market expected to come on stream in the near future.