The Japanese Agency for International Cooperation (JICA) plans to send technicians to Angola for experimental cotton cultivation in the Capanda Agricultural Hub in Malanje province. Field trials with cotton varieties using a drip irrigation system, in collaboration with the Angolan Institute of Agrarian Development, will assess their adaptability and yield.
JICA support will bring in irrigation equipment, seeds, fertilizers and cotton pressing machinery, a Portuguese news agency report cited the Japanese Embassy in Luanda as saying.
Angola first witnessed cotton cropping in the mid-16th century during the Portuguese colonial period. The country’s cotton production reached a record of 86,000 tons in 1973, making it one of the world’s largest producers.
But the civil war after the proclamation of independence in 1975 virtually ended cotton production.
The initiative that has been given impetus by the Japanese is underway with a study that will be undertaken in collaboration with the Institute of Agrarian Development (IDA). The study will encompass several field trials with different varieties of cotton by using a drip irrigation system. International experts will assist in this experiment and assess the the adaptability and yield of each variety of cotton that is experimented on.
The JICA backing for this venture will ensure acquisition of irrigation equipment, seeds, fertilizers, cotton pressing, and other needs according to Portuguese news agency Lusa. The announcement for the launch of this initiative was first made in July this year, by the program coordinator for cotton production in the ministry of agriculture Carlos Canza. According to the announcement, the experimental launch willcover an area of 10,000 hectares. It cited the expected yield of 5 tons of cotton per hectare.