Minister of Primary Resources and Tourism Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Ali bin Haji Apong yesterday paid a working visit to the Kandol Agricultural Development Area (KKP) to keep abreast of the paddy cultivation progress on the farm.
On arrival, the minister was welcomed by Deputy Minister of Finance and Economy (Economy) and Chairman of Paddy Co Sdn Bhd Dato Seri Paduka Dr Haji Abdul Manaf bin Haji Metussin and Operations Manager Fuziah binti Haji Hamdan.
Paddy Co, a company under Darussalam Assets Sdn Bhd, has made strides in the planting and harvesting of the ‘Sembada188’ paddy variant in the area since the plantation opened last October.
The minister, in an interview, highlighted the success of the first harvest at KKP kandol, which totalled at 21.7 tonnes across seven hectares of land.
“This year’s yield in the first quarter has shown a 36 per cent increase when compared to the same period last year, from 1,324.62 tonnes last year to 1,801.28 tonnes this year,” he said.
“This represents the continuous effort by the Government of His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam to improve the output of local paddy production to attain self-sufficiency.”
The minister later took part in the sowing of paddy across 18 hectares of land, which set the stage for the second phase of the project, which aims to fully utilise all 500 hectares of the farmland by January 2023.
The minister was joined by Acting Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism (MPRT) Hajah Tutiaty binti Haji Abdul Wahab, Director of Development at the MPRT Hajah Salawati binti Haji Puasa and Acting Director of Agriculture and Agrifood Hajah Masliana Yuliah binti Abdullah.