Wednesday, December 12, 2012
By Peter M. Tase
During the first nine months of 2012, agricultural exports of Nicaragua have increased by 16.35 percent compared with the same period last year; even though this year, rain has been scarce in the crop fields.
According to the Office of Exports (CETREX), Nicaragua exported 2.075 billion USD in products between January and September, resulting in 16.35 percent higher than agricultural products being exported in the same period last year ( 1.783.6 million USD).
According to Jose Antonio Mayorga, vice president of the National Union of Agricultural Producers of Nicaragua (UPANIC), September 2011, was a month characterized by heavy rain but unfortunately the volume of products was reduced by 30 percent: “We are waiting for the upcoming season to bring some showers of rain, so there is a proper growth and maturation of crops such as rice, sorghum, soybeans and peanuts and hopefully maintain the same levels of agricultural production.”
For the officials of Nicaragua’s Institute of Meteorology rain precipitation have decreased throughout the country side, this is why farmers have not reported any positive results until now. In Nicaragua, later this month, are expected a series of light showers that would provide the necessary moisture for the growth of crops. In mid-2012, El Niño has also contributed towards a dry weather in most parts of Nicaragua. Meteorologists expect changes of weather patterns, with some rain, and crops are expected to yield more in the beginning of 2013.
Even though Nicaragua is the second poorest country in Latin America, its agricultural production sector, over the recent years, has adopted a major change towards introducing its products in national and international market, demonstrating a certain level of dynamism in regional agricultural markets. In Nicaragua, just like in any other Latin American country, Investment in agriculture affects and directly reduces the level of poverty, as the agricultural production increase, poverty reduction is inevitable. Nicaraguan government should create the conditions for increased investment in agriculture and these political decisions will have greater effect in reducing the level of poverty in the country.
Spero analyst Peter M Tase writes on Latin American political and trade issues.