OTDF CEO Havini Vira presents a Share Certificate to North Fly MP James Donald and North Fly DDA staff
The Ok Tedi Development Foundation (OTDF), on behalf of WestAgro Holdings Limited (WAH), presented a Fly Vanilla Limited Share Certificate to the North Fly District Development Authority (NFDDA).
NFDDA, purchased the 115 shares worth PGK1.15 million in June of 2021, received the share certificate in a small ceremony on Wednesday 5 January 2022 at the North Fly District Office in Kiunga.
North Fly MP James Donald expressed that, “the DDA is purchasing the shares for our people at the community level in all the North Fly District Wards. I want the farmers to be inspired by this commitment made by the DDA. The DDA wants the impact at the ward level in turn the farmers will produce more. We need to build a bridge for transition at mine closure. What we are doing now is laying a foundation in the event that Ok Tedi closes tomorrow, we can stand firm and say we have prepared for this day and life will still go on for the people of Western Province. We want money in the pocket of our people, that’s that drive and vision for every one of us. We will continue to work together with our development partners. We are in very exciting times.”
The shares certificate gives all 115 wards in the North Fly District a shareholding through the DDA in Fly Vanilla Limited, a PGK42.9 million agribusiness enterprise. Fly Vanilla is currently constructing a vanilla nucleus estate at Samagos and supporting smallholder farmers to grow and sell vanilla on their doorstep. Fly Vanilla is the second commercial enterprise to be delivered under the WestAgro Master Plan, supporting the Western Provincial Government’s agribusiness pillar in the 5-year provincial development plan.
In presenting the shares certificate, OTDF CEO, Havini Vira said, “On behalf of the WAH Chairman and OTDF I congratulate the Chairman and Board of the NFDDA. It is only through visionary leadership that we can guide our people to a sustainable future. North Fly MP, James Donald has done well in encouraging his people to seriously pursue agriculture and this investment is evidence of planning for life after Ok Tedi.”
WAH Chairman Ian Middleton anticipates that Fly Vanilla will start buying vanilla beans from mid-2022.
WAH, in partnership with the Innovative Agro Industries (IAI) from Israel, is implementing the WestAgro Master Plan to empower Western Province families to sustainably earn an income through agriculture. The WAH vision is to turn Western Province from gold dependence into green self-reliance.