Harper Government assists rural development in Nicaragua

February 17, 2013 - Assisting developing countries to increase sustainable economic growth in rural areas, and their access to safe, nutritious food, is a priority for Canada's international assistance. The Honourable Diane Ablonczy, Minister of State of Foreign Affairs (Americas and Consular Affairs), on behalf of the Minister of International Cooperation, the Honourable Julian Fantino, today announced $8.1 million in Canadian support for rural development in Nicaragua.

Minister Ablonczy made the announcement during her visit to Managua, as part of her mission to Central and South America.

"With Canada's assistance, Nicaragua will continue to boost food production by small-scale farmers, helping many Nicaraguan families get the food they need to live safe, healthy and productive lives," said Minister Ablonczy. "Our government will continue to support initiatives like this as part of our efforts to help build prosperity for all of those who call the Americas home."

Canada's support, which will flow from the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) until 2015, contributes to strengthening the agriculture and forestry sector in Nicaragua. This project, delivered through the Government of Nicaragua's Productive Rural Development Sector Program (known by its Spanish acronym PRORURAL) helps to strengthen farmers' capacity to increase the productivity and the quality of food production.

PRORURAL aims to increase sustainable economic growth in rural areas, as well as to provide increased access to safe, nutritious food for poor rural women and men. PRORURAL assists farmers to diversify their crops and transform their produce into higher-value products, and promotes sustainable use of forestry resources and improved management of the forestry sector.

Minister Ablonczy is on a four country tour of Central and South America in support of Canada's engagement in the Americas-a foreign policy priority since 2007.

For more information on Minister Ablonczy's tour of Latin America, please visit theDepartment of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) website.

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For more information, media should contact:

Daniel Bezalel Richardsen
Press Secretary to the Minister of International Cooperation
Telephone: 819-953-6238
Email: danielbezalel.richardsen@acdi-cida.gc.ca

Media Relations Office
Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA)
Telephone: 819-953-6534
Email: media@acdi-cida.gc.ca
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