China hosts online course to help Myanmar improve tropical crops cultivation, November 22, 2021

The 21-day online Training Course on Improved Varieties Breeding of Tropical Crops for Myanmar started Nov. 16, attracting a total of 22 trainees from Myanmar.

The course was hosted by China's Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) and delivered by the Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences (CATAS). 

Tan Shufu, economic and commercial counselor of the Chinese Embassy in Myanmar, said in his speech during the opening ceremony that China and Myanmar are close neighbors linked by mountains and rivers, and enjoy a long history of friendship. 

Tan said that agricultural cooperation has become an important part of the bilateral relationship, as the two countries are jointly promoting the Belt and Road Initiative and building the China-Myanmar Economic Corridor.

China has played an active role in supporting the agriculture and rural development of Myanmar. For example, the fourth batch of agricultural projects in Myanmar supported by the Lancang-Mekong Cooperation (LMC) Special Fund was launched in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar on Nov. 9. 

China encourages its companies to invest in Myanmar and cooperate in various agricultural sectors such as silkworm farming and growing cash crops including soybean, coffee, and rubber.

Qu Fujing, second-level inspector of the Department of Commerce of Hainan province, emphasized that Myanmar is an important economic partner of China in Southeast Asia. 

Qu hoped the training course will help the trainees learn about China's history and culture, as well as its reform and opening-up achievements, boost their confidence in their country's economic development, and become envoys between the two countries.

Liao Zirong, director of the Training Center of the CATAS, reviewed the more than 10 years of close cooperation between the CATAS and Myanmar in the field of tropical crops, saying that the agricultural exchanges and cooperation between the two sides have broad prospects.

Saw Hto Lwe Htoo from Yezin Agricultural University in Myanmar said that the training course is timely, as his country is now facing several challenges in agricultural development. He believed that this training will help his country to formulate and implement a sound agricultural policy, and encourage the trainees to play a greater role in their respective departments.

The training course is aimed at helping Myanmar train more urgently needed professionals in the field of tropical agriculture, promote the development of Myanmar's tropical agriculture, and expand the areas of bilateral agricultural cooperation.