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17249: (Arthur) Oxfam/coffee (fwd)

From: Tttnhm@aol.com

Extract from a report by Bert Smit, and Karen Hammink, Novib Oxfam Netherlands


Agricultural production has more or less ceased. The dumping of cheap rice,
sugar and maize from the US is making it more and more difficult to increase
the profitability of agriculture. Any accession to the Free Trade Area of the
Americas (FTAA) will probably only exacerbate the situation. Haiti, which in the
colonial times was one of the richest areas in the Americas thanks to the
export of cane sugar, now has to import half the sugar it needs. At the moment,
the country’s income consists largely of the export of mangoes and coffee but,
above all, the currency that Haitians in other countries send to their family
members back home.

Increased attention for the coffee sector
Nevertheless, there are positive signals. For example, the PEJEFE
organization has managed to ensure that eight thousand residents of the Port-au-Prince
slum will soon have access to running water at two locations. The coffee
cooperative RECOCARNO is also making progress. This organization sells high-quality
coffee from affiliated cooperatives to the Fair Trade market in Japan. As a
result, the coffee price crisis is scarcely having any effect on the farmers. In
cooperation with other coffee organizations, the government is also being
lobbied to focus more attention on the coffee sector, a source of income for well
over 200,000 families in Haiti. The projects set up by PEJEFE and RECOCARNO
fall within the programmed framework that has been developed by the Oxfam
organizations which are active in the country.

(source: http://www.oxfam.org/eng/story_haiti_water.htm )


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democracy and equitable development, since 1992.