Coffee is the country’s second-largest agricultural commodity after palm oil, accounting for 27 percent of all agriculture exports and six percent of the country’s GDP.
Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea James Marape has announced an inaugural minister for coffee, in what is believed to be the world's first.
The post shows the government's commitment to expanding key agriculture industries, said Marape on Tuesday, who won re-election earlier this month after an election plagued by violence and allegations of voter fraud.
"Minister Kuli’s focus will be coffee, coffee, and coffee," he said, announcing the appointment of Joe Kuli, from Anglimp-South Waghi.
The coffee industry needed to be revived to bring in more export revenue, Marape said.
He added that Kuli understood the challenge because he comes from the Wahgi Valley of Jiwaka, which was once a huge coffee plantation, but has been overgrown by bush.
Coffee is the country’s second-largest agricultural commodity after palm oil, accounting for 27 percent of all agriculture exports and 6 percent of the country’s GDP, The Guardian reported.
Minister for palm oil
For the first time Marape also named a minister for palm oil.
The coffee and palm oil ministries sit alongside the main agriculture ministry, run by Goroka MP Aiye Tambua.
"The appointments specifically spotlight agriculture in a very significant way, to see agriculture growth in the country," he said when announcing the new 33-member cabinet.
"I want to drink coffee made in Goroka, Mt Hagen, Lae and other parts of the country. I want to see more coffee grown for export to the lucrative markets of the world," he added.
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