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V4 countries sign four-year project supporting Kenyan farmers

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Bratislava, Dec 14 (CTK) – Czech, Hungarian, Polish and Slovak representatives on Thursday signed a four-year project that aims to improve the conditions of thousands of small farmers in Kenya and contribute to the dealing with the causes of illegal migration in this way.

“Through this initiative, we will support 15,000 farmers on the coast of Kenya by creating jobs and improving the social and economic situation,” Slovak Foreign Ministry state secretary Lukas Parizek said.

The chief manager of the project, worth 14 million euros in total according to previous information, is the state-run Slovak Agency for International Developmental Cooperation.

The project wants to help create new jobs in the production of cashew and sesame on the Kenyan coast.

The European Union will contribute two million euros through the Emergency Trust Fund for Africa. The four Central European countries signing the project, which form the Visegrad Group (V4), previously contributed over three million euros to third fund. In September, Slovakia decided to send further one million euros to it.

Jiri Hejkrlik, Vice Dean of the Faculty of Tropical AgriSciences of the Czech University of Life Sciences, said new cashew trees will be planted and the cashew nuts should be certified as fair trade and bio products.

The university would provide support for growing cashew nuts and sesame and also take part in the assessment of the whole project, Hejkrlik said.

The Czech University of Life Sciences and the Czech branch of the Fairtrade organisation will represent the Czech Republic in the project.

The prime ministers of the V4 countries Thursday confirmed their plan to financially support the protection of the Libyan border with 35 million euros, through the EU Emergency Trust Fund, each of them contributing one fourth of the sum.

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