Exchanging MoU (from left to right- Dr. Balaram Thapa, LI-BIRD Executive Director, Honorable Minister Mr. Chandra Bahadur Budha, MoLMACPA, Gandaki Province, Dr. Hari Bahadur K.C, Secretary MoLMACPA, Gandaki Province,Grishma Neupane, Senior Livestock Development Officer, Planning and Monitoring Division (MoLMACPA) and Mr Beni Bahadur Basnet, LI-BIRD Board Secretary.
LI-BIRD and Ministry of Land Management, Agriculture, Cooperative and Poverty Alleviation (MoLMACPA), Gandaki Province had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in 2019 to facilitate greater exchange of knowledge, information and services for effective implementation of Gandaki Province flagship programme ‘Chief Minister’s Environment-Friendly Model Agriculture Village Programme’ and the development of ‘Climate Investment Plan (CIP) for the agriculture sector. The MoU was for a period of 2 years. Towards the end of the MoU, LI-BIRD and MoLMACPA reviewed the progress made against the commitments made in the MoU, including an assessment of whether there is a need to extend or renew the MoU. The findings were overwhelmingly positive. As a result, both institutions unanimously agreed to continue formal collaboration for mutual benefits that led to the development and signing of a new 5-year MoU on 16 March 2022.
The scope of the MoU covers exchanging knowledge, good practices and technical assistance in areas of sustainable conservation, management and utilization of agrobiodiversity, promotion of safe foods through promoting organic and ecological agriculture, Climate Smart Agriculture (CSA), strengthening local seeds system and agro advisory services.
Speaking at the MoU signing event, LI-BIRD’s Executive Director Dr Balaram Thapa shared ‘We appreciate the Gandaki Province MoLMACPA for providing recognition to our work through MoU. We initiated formalizing our partnership through MoU from the Gandaki Province and is currently replicated in other provinces where we are currently working. The implementation of earlier MoU has been satisfactory. I believe that we will continue to build on our joint experiences, mutual learning and influencing, generate greater synergies and contribute to strengthening agriculture sector in Gandaki province’.
The Secretary of MoLMACPA Dr Hari Bahadur KC shared ‘There are a number of areas of mutual interest between the Ministry and LI-BIRD and this kind of formal partnership shall help us for meaningful collaboration in those areas. LI-BIRD’s expertise and experience in agrobiodiversity research, local crops registration and promotion, community seed banks, climate-smart agriculture as well as approaches to promoting safe foods are highly relevant for the provincial government. In our joint review, an earlier MoU was effective in its implementation and contributed greatly to implement the Chief Minister’s Climate Smart Village Programme. We hope the new MoU will also help to generate additional resources through joint programme development and implementation and contribute to the development of the agriculture sector in Gandaki Province’.
Honorable Minister Mr. Chandra Bahadur Budha in his closing remarks shared ‘LI-BIRD has played an important role in the agriculture sector in Gandaki Province for a long time. I am briefed that we made efforts with good intent during our earlier MoU. The Gandaki Provincial government has its 5 year’s strategic plan and this MoU is aligned with that strategy. We have challenges, especially in the marketing of farm produces and improving the seed sector where we expect technical support from LI-BIRD. From this point on, we consider that this MoU will facilitate greater integration and synergy in planning and implementation of agriculture interventions between the two institutions’.
The event was facilitated by Dr. Grishma Neupane, Senior Livestock Development Officer, Planning and Monitoring Division, and attended by Mr. Basu Regmi, Chief of the Agriculture Directorate and Mr Balkrishna Adhikari, Senior Agriculture Development Officer, Agriculture Development Division, MoLMACPA. From LI-BIRD, Mr. Beni Basnet, Board Secretary and Mr. Krishna Prasad Baral, immediate past Chairperson of LI-BIRD Executive Board, including other senior staff witnessed the event.