Three local officials and a Scientist have been given the chance to study the benefits of bamboo and rattan in China.
Laolaoifale Solomona, Penisula Leala, Simaika Lio from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (M.N.R.E); and Philip Reti from the Scientific Research Organization of Samoa (S.R.O.S) along with over 200 participants from other countries will be attending a three-week training course at the International Centre for Bamboo and Rattan in China courtesy of the Chinese government.
They will be taught by a group of senior experts in that target field; these trainings will hopefully introduce bamboo and rattan industry development in Samoa.
The Chinese Ambassador, Wang Xuefeng was joined by the four lucky Samoans at his residence to discuss the trip before leaving the country.
According to the Chinese Ambassador, this is only one of the ways they have helped Samoa over the past few weeks.
“This project is one part of all the programmes for training provided by the Chinese government, in the past several weeks we have invited some farmers from the Samoa Farm Association as well as some teachers from the village, and some journalists and technicians from different news rooms to travel to China for seminars,” he said.
“We think it is helpful for our Samoan friends to visit China and learn through some technical experiences at these trainings.”
The Chinese Ambassador continued explaining the importance of this upcoming seminar.
“In China we have very rich bamboo resources which will be introduced to our friends who are going on the trip,” he said. “Aside from all the seminars, our friends will get the chance to visit 2 beautiful provinces where they will do observations on the growing of bamboo as well as the process technology.
“I also think it is a good opportunity for them to exchange their views with pacific island country colleagues because this seminar is designed for developing countries.
“These hands-on experiences will help give an understanding of how people in china make use of bamboos and rattan which could also help Samoa one day.”
According to Mr. Reti during the discussion, there are many uses for bamboo and rattan which Samoa has yet to take advantage of.
“Bamboos grow very well in the nutritious soils of Samoa, it would be a good factor to show the people of Samoa the many uses and benefits of bamboo and rattan,” he said.
“It would also be another good source of income for people in Samoa through handicrafts, furniture and so on. Right now not many people are aware of the benefits of bamboos compared to other plants like coconut trees.”
Mr. Reti concluded with a word of thanks to the Ambassador.
“We would like to thank the Chinese embassy for this opportunity to travel to China,” he said.
“We hope we will be able to learn all that we need so that one day we may be able to apply the benefits of these plants to Samoa."