Monday, August 19, 2019

19th August,2019 Daily Global Regional Local Rice E-Newsletter

19th August 2019 Daily Global Regional Local Rice E-Newsletter

Seasonal Ban on Rice Imports Lifted

The Ministry of Industries, Mining and Trade has lifted its seasonal ban on rice imports.
The decision has been communicated to all customs bureaus across the country in a letter signed by Ali Vakili, the director general of Imports and Free Trade Zone Department of the Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration, Fars News Agency reported.
Every year, during the rice harvest season, the government bans rice imports in support of domestic farmers and production.
Referring to the rise in prices of local rice varieties and the importance of meeting domestic needs, Abbas Qobadi, deputy minister of industries, mining and trade, underscored the need for allocating subsidized foreign currency to import rice in a letter to the Central Bank of Iran’s Governor Abdolnasser Hemmati. 
Iranians consume more than 3 million tons of rice per annum. 
“Domestic rice production is expected to reach 2.5 million tons by the end of the current Iranian year [March 19, 2020],” said Director General of the Agriculture Ministry's Grains and Essential Goods Department Faramak Aziz Karimi.
The difference between domestic production and local need is imported from the UAE, India, Pakistan, Thailand, Turkey and Iraq.


Pakistanis want land for investment


By Ashraf Kasirye
Added 14th August 2019 07:14 PM
“The Pakistan community would equally want to contribute to Uganda’s development by investing especially in Agriculture produce, but most of them need government help to ease the process of land acquisition, Nakadama said at the function.
Description: P4a 703x422
A section of Pakistan Nationals, some of them with Ugandan citizenship have expressed concern over the bureaucratic process in Uganda’s land system.

“Sometimes it may take forever” a Pakistan/Ugandan National who preferred anonymity stated. “We hope our consulate will help us solve this problem” He added.

It was during the celebrations of the 14th August Pakistan independence day held by the Pakistan community under the Pakistan Association in Uganda at an only male attended the function at the Pakistan consulate in Ntinda suburbs  Kampala.

Perhaps for fear of retribution, most of the affected Pakistanis were not willing to openly speak but their consular Lukia Nakadama (former minister) did. She expressed government willingness to find a solution and support for the investors.

Her first move was to invite the state minister for Lands Persis Namuganza as the guest of honor at tods colorful independence celebrations.

“The Pakistan community would equally want to contribute to Uganda’s development by investing especially in Agriculture produce, but most of them need government help to ease the process of land acquisition, Nakadama said at the function.

She said  Pakistan has many potential investors who would (If given the opportunity) employ a number of Ugandans, but also widen the country’s tax base.
Namuganza pledged government support towards the Pakistanis’ requests saying that the government does not discriminate among investors. “We treat all investors in the same way and we always work towards creating a conducive environment for every one of them both local and foreign.” She said.

She added that she has been receiving such requests of assistance especially from Pakistan rice farmers and she has “Always helped them”.  Namuganza urged the leaders of the Pakistan Association in Uganda to lead their members to her office which “is always open for everyone” so that they can receive the necessary assistance.

Meanwhile, Nakadama warned Pakistan businessmen against internal disputes and fights, saying that such conflicts cripple efforts of development for both the Pakistan community but also Uganda’s business community.

She highlighted the fact that she has received several cases in her office related to fights between Pakistan businessmen and although she has tried to settle them amicably, many of them seem to be endless and unsolvable.

“You should accept competition amongst yourselves because it indicates a healthy environment for doing business” She advised them.

On the contrary, Imran Nadeem the Secretary-general of the Pakistan Association of Uganda clarified on what Nakadama referred to as ‘Internal fights’ saying that “What she calls fights is Just competition among ourselves. We do not have any conflicts at all” he stressed.

Nadeem, however, contradicted himself with a rejoinder to his statement that “All business communities compete and sometimes disagree, Coca-Cola competes with Pepsi and you can’t call that fighting. I can’t say that she was lying but I believe we don’t fight; we only compete” seemingly confirming Nakadama’s claim.

Namuganza also reiterated Nakadama’s words by advising members of the Pakistan community to love one another even if they are competitors in the same business, but also love all other races including Ugandans and other foreign Nationals.

About the Kashmir conflict 
Commenting about the ongoing conflict between India and Pakistan over Kashmir territory on the borders of the two countries, Nadeem and other leaders of the Pakistan community in Uganda expressed agony over what they call “Inhuman acts committed against Kashmir residents by the Indian government of India”.

 “We stand together in solidarity with our brothers, sisters and children in Kashmir, while calling upon the Indian government to respect the United Nations council resolution which states that the people of Kashmir have the right to decide whether they belong to Pakistan or India” Nadeem added.


7 newly conferred, upgraded scientists take their oath

Description: Science01 081819The 2019 newly conferred and upgraded scientists (from left): Mario V. Navasero, MSc; Imelda Angeles Agdeppa, PhD; Fe M. de la Cueva, PhD; Olivia P. Damasco, PhD; Charito Tranquilan-Aranilla, MSc; Sofronio C. Camacho, MSc; and Reynante L. Ordonio, PhD.
The Science Career System (SCS) held its 2019 oath-taking of newly conferred and upgraded scientists on August 9 at a hotel in Quezon City.
The oath-taking was hosted by the SCS and National Academy of Science and Technology, Philippines (NAST PHL).
The Civil Service Commission (CSC) and the Department of Science and Technology conferred the Scientist rank to six new researchers and upgraded the rank of one scientist from the University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB), the Department of Agriculture (DA) and DOST.
The newly conferred and upgraded scientists are:
1.For Sofronio C. Camacho, Scientist I from the Forest Development Center. He  conducted significant researches for more than three decades in the areas of community-based forest management, citronella production and processing, bamboo production and harvesting, forest traditional knowledge, mangrove ecosystems, forest certification and climate change.
His researches contribute greatly to the development of human communities and help promote sustainable and equitable forest management and rehabilitations/restoration of degraded areas in our country.
2. Dr. Fe M. de la Cueva, Scientist I from the Institute of Plant Breeding (IPB) is the principal investigator for many research projects with outputs that are now being used by several relevant industries and stakeholders.
Among her contributions that created an impact to the national economy or pest industry include the development of virus using antibody-based and nucleic acid based detection techniques, which subsequently made the Plant Laboratory of IPB as the National Virus Indexing Lab for banana by Bioversity International.
3. Dr. Olivia P. Damasco, Scientist I also from IPB, pioneered the banana tissue culture, a breakthrough technology that contributed tremendously in value of clean planting materials needed by the banana industry.
More recently, as the principal investigator, she initiated the in vitro conversation of the Philippine sugarcane germplasm collections. In an environment highly vulnerable to natural calamities, climate change, and urbanization, the in vitro gene bank offers assurance of security and safety of valuable plant genetic resources.
4. Dr. Reynante L. Ordonio, Scientist I from the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) of the DA, found for the first time in sorghum that gibberellin (GA) is crucial for the erectness of its culum.
He showed that GA deficiency resulting from any loss-of-function mutation in four genes involved in the early steps of GA biosynthesis not only results in severe dwarfism but also abnormal culm bending in sorghum.
5. Dr. Imelda A. Agdeppa, Scientist II from the Food and Nutrition Research Institute of the DOST, conducted numerous researches, which were considered as basis for crafting laws and policies for the improvement in nutritional status of Filipinos.
They include the “Integrated Model on School-Based Gardening, Nutrition Education and Supplementary Feeding” which became the reference of the recently released National Supplementary Feeding Act, and the “Pilot-Scale Commercialization Iron Fortified Rice” that led to the release of local ordinances for the sale and consumption of iron-fortified rice (IFR) in numerous local government units (LGUs).
This intervention model has been fully adopted for implementation in different parts of the country. IFR is included as a food commodity in the Family Food Packs of the Department of Social Welfare and Development; used in the supplementary feeding program of the Department of Education, and has attracted adopters of the technology resulting to wider distribution of IFR.
6. Charito T. Aranilla, Scientist I of Philippine Nuclear Research Institute, conducted significant researches in the fields of radiation chemistry and radiation processing, utilizing ionizing radiation like gamma radiation and electron beam to modify polymeric materials for various applications.
She pioneered the carboxymethylation of kappa-carrageenan (CMKC) and opened doors to more nonfood applications of the polysaccharide. Carboxymethylation transformed k-carrageenan from degrading to radiation crosslinking-responsive polymer.
The CMkC can be used as a stand-alone material for developing crosslinked and sterile hydrogel for wound care management. The crosslinked hydrogel also demonstrated super-absorbency and biodegradability that can be utilized to ameliorate sandy soil and improved water holding capacity to make suitable for crop cultivation.
7. Mario V. Navasero, Scientist II from the National Crop Protection Center of UPLB, is notable for his achievements during the period for his upgrading (2013-2015), which included the discovery and use of Comperiella calaunica (Hymenoptera: Encytridae), an efficient biological control agent and specific parasitoid, that contributed to the cessation of outbreak of invasive cocolisap Aspidiotus Rigidus Reyne (Hemiptera: Diaspididae), elucidate the chemical bases of repellency of some plants to some major pests of rice and eggplant, and assessment of potential impact of Bacillus thuringiensis eggplant, the first insecticide-protected plant being developed in the country, on nontarget arthropods.
The scientists were sworn in by CSC and SCC Chairman Alicia de la Rosa-Bala; Science Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña; NAST PHL President Acd. Rhodora V. Azanza; National Research Council of the Philippines (NRCP) President Dr. Ramon A. Razal, NAST PHL Director IV Luningning E. Samarita-Domingo, Chairman of Special Technical Committee on Natural Sciences, Acd. Fabian M. Dayrit, chairman of Special Technical Committee on Agricultural Sciences, Acd. Eufemio T. Rasco Jr. and Chairman of Special Technical Committee on Social Sciences Dr. Maria Cynthia Rose B. Bautista.
The conferred scientists are ranked to receive the corresponding salary grade. They are also entitled to representation and travel allowances; Magna Carta benefits; membership in international scientific organization and/or subscription to scientific journals; publication assistance; and foreign travel assistance for oral paper presentation of $3,000 per scientist every two years.
With this development, the roster of scientists conferred under the system brings the total number to 168 since it was institutionalized in 1983 by then-President Ferdinand E. Marcos. The system is the government’s effort for personnel in the government institutions with limited number of available higher plantilla positions.