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The road ahead

Agriculture is said to be the “cultivation of crops and livestock for human consumption”.

Agriculture has helped in creating surpluses and sustainable food security. We can go back to the days of the subsistence economy, when barter was the only method of trade that existed.

During this era, Agriculture formed the backbone of these traditional societies. Where am I going with all this?

Often time, we are quick to project blame, highlight faults and not present the solutions or suggest ways of improving issues of National interests.

Tourism has and continues to contribute to our GDP, no one is disputing the fact that tourism is good for business. In fact, we welcome visitors to our shores yearly, with warmth and great hospitality. We even welcome investors who exploit our labour, give little regard to our local farmers and repatriate most of their profits.

We can build all the hotels, we can continue to develop the infrastructure of both the rural and urban areas. But at what cost? Based on the empirical evidence that exist, what is the correlation between Tourism and Agriculture? Is it sustainable? Are they either mutually exclusive or inclusive?

Our land is and continues to be our greatest asset. I believe we need to put more emphasis, resources and technical support towards the cultivation of crops and livestock. Now is the time to reinvest in agro-processing. This will help in reducing the import bill significantly and increasing our export. We did it at a time when there were very little to no technological advancement. What is preventing us from doing it now?

We can also look at local tourism and the creation of a cultural hub, where our traditions, folkways and other unique parts of our culture can be displayed and promoted.

Solving the economic crisis and challenges we face requires a multi-faceted approach. Let’s not put all our eggs in one basket.

Michelle Alexander

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