Basseterre, St. Kitts, January 25, 2019 (SKNIS): The St. Kitts Eco-park, better known as the Agro-Tourism Demonstration Farm Co-Op, was officially handed over to the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis from the Government of the Republic of China (Taiwan) on Thursday, January 24, 2019, after eight years of operation.
While speaking at the ceremony held at the Eco- Park in Sandy Point, Minister of Agriculture, the Honourable Eugene Hamilton, said that the government is proud of the long-standing relationship that has existed with Taiwan for over three decades and for the significant benefits this relationship has brought to “the shores of this country.”
“Mr. Ambassador, each section of our economy has been positively impacted by the generosity of your country and your people. I encourage you to convey to your government our best wishes for an enduring friendship that is to the benefit of all,” Minister Hamilton said.
He mentioned a few projects undertaken with the help of the Republic of China (Taiwan) that has benefited the Federation tremendously. These include the Agriculture Upland Crop Project, which entails a laboratory that helps farmers to know the level of pesticides in the soil so that they do not use more pesticides to contaminate the crops and tests the quality of the food. He also made note of the Climate Variability Project that was introduced in 2018 to provide data so that farmers can know the best time of year to plant certain crops.
Minister Hamilton said that with the fusion of the Ministries of Tourism and Agriculture, the Eco-Park will provide a great opportunity to display the history of the island in a hands-on way.
“I wish to encourage all of you to take an opportunity to come to this park with your classes, groups and family and continue to educate yourselves about St. Kitts and Nevis, especially through this institution,” he added.
Resident Ambassador of the Republic of China (Taiwan) to St. Kitts and Nevis, His Excellency Tom Lee, said that as a strong ally of the Federation, Taiwan’s mission is to “teach you how to fish, instead of giving you fish.” He said that he is confident that the park will be in good hands because the necessary skills were taught over the years.
“It is time for you to stand on your own,” he said while stating that “I want to take this opportunity to thank the Ministries of Tourism and Agriculture for hosting this meaningful event. The Eco-Park project, simply speaking, was a joint effort of both governments meant to promote tourism and agriculture in St. Kitts and Nevis. Today I am very pleased to formally handover the Eco-Park to the Government,” he said.
The Eco-Park is an Agro-Tourism facility jointly created by the Governments of Taiwan and St. Kitts and Nevis and has become a well-known tourist attraction. The park was established in 2011 with the objective to showcase the history of the agricultural section in the Federation to visitors and locals.