Monday, September 08, 2008

Learning Agriculture in Taiwan

Forty nine Malaysian Members of Parliament ("MPs") have agreed to board their planes to Taiwan for a field trip to learn more about agriculture and industrial sectors.

It was fun reading the news when I first heard about this field trip. The places that cropped up were New Zealand then Australia, followed by Macao and China too. Lastly, all ended up in Taiwan as the visa requirement was much much easier. China ain't going to be happy with the Malaysian government for allowing forty nine lawmakers travelling to the land of their nemesis.

I have nothing against people who wanted to learn more stuff in beefing up their knowledge in all aspects of life especially when it was mentioned that the forty nine of them are paying for this trip out of their own pockets. True? Nobody can proof this but we give them the benefit of doubt.

In reading Taiwan - Agriculture, the agriculture sector from year 1973 to 1987 has only seen the crop production growth rate increased on average only 0.1% per year. In year 2001, the agriculture sector contributed only 2% to Taiwan's GDP. The agriculture industry's high cost of production and low returns have caused farm households to decrease by 6%.

Their top crop production is actually rice. The Taiwanese government is encouraging farmers to go for soybeans, wheat, and corn which are more profitable now owing to the growth in biotech industry. If rice was the main reason that the Malaysian MPs went for, ain't Thailand a better choice as they are the considered the main rice producer of the world.

Unless the government has better ideas in developing our nation into a world class flower producers in which Taiwan is embarking on it too. In reading Taiwan's Council of Agriculture, Taiwan is aiming to develop itself into a world–class flower island.

On the street itself, the general public is laughing at the MPs who are going for the field trip. The rumours of Pakatan Rakyat taking over the Malaysian government on 16 Sept 2008 could have prompted this last minute trip. But the organiser, Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing, said it was not but just co-incidental. All of time, it has to be co-incidental with the 16 Sept date. And it's in the middle of the fasting month, the Ramadan period. I don't think you can find any halal certified dishes in Taiwan itself especially when you have to go for field trips.

Even though they are paying for the trip on their own, why did they choose Taiwan. I'm very sure that the agricultural plans put up by the Ministry of Agriculture was equally good or even world class standard. In a field trip of such importance to the nation as a whole, ministry staff were not called up to tag along??????? Will all the forty nine MPs give special lectures individually at all Ministry of Agriculture's offices throughout the nation when they come back?

The one statement that caused me to fall down from my chair while reading it was this -
"The trip was supposedly for MPs to update themselves with the latest information about agriculture and high-tech food production so that they could debate better on the Budget when Parliament sits again in October."

So after all the questionings about the trip in linking it with the 16 Sept 2008 defection of MPs from the ruling government to the oppositions was just a rumour. The MPs are equipping themselves in answering questions during debate time in the parliament. Told you to give them a benefit of doubt.

Looks like there will be lots of overseas trips in the year to come till the debate on the Budget is over. MPs will travel all over the world in order to understand the mechanisms of how those things functions before they can debate in the parliament. There will be issues like:-
* public transportation nationwide (Germany has autobahn and top train services)
* public amenities in rural of sabah and sarawak (Australia's rural is quite huge)
* food security (Argentina's national plan on providing food at stable prices)

Reading: 50 Barisan MPs begin eight-day study trip - Star
Tags: Agriculture, Taiwan, Malaysian Politics, Council of Agriculture, Tiong King Sing, Ministry of Agriculture

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Blogger Ketam said...

They should be more worry about 911 than 916, what if something happen?
All 51 in same plane? Same hotel? Taiwanese fear of 921!

08 September, 2008 21:47  
Blogger Borneo Falcon said...

What a waste of our tax payer's money.

09 September, 2008 09:15  
Blogger limcyam said...

I wonder what class they are flying.. 'C' or 'Y'?

09 September, 2008 09:15  
Blogger Johnny Ong said...

ketam - going time, 41 in same plane. coming back dunno in same plane or not

borneo - they said they paying on their own ...... hehe believe it or not

lim - yeah, this was not mentioned

09 September, 2008 11:08  
Blogger foongpc said...

I think the Taiwan trip is such crap! They must be kidding me. Why waste taxpayers' money? Seriously, maybe China should protest.

09 September, 2008 12:31  
Blogger Unknown said...

doubtful news...why this happen now and not after 916? why they coming back after 916 which is 917?...

^_^ too much why isn't good for me =X

09 September, 2008 14:06  
Blogger Johnny Ong said...

foong - many people really doubt that they wld be willing to pay for a trip that they were forced to go

nkw@i - even if no why its also no good already with this trip

10 September, 2008 00:50  
Blogger TNH said...

send them to learn agriculture really a waste of $$.

15 September, 2008 15:16  
Blogger Johnny Ong said...

tnh - did the govt came out with the money to sponsor this trip?

15 September, 2008 15:28  

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