Mr. Boer said bamboo is being used in Asia, Europe and other parts of Africa including Ghana for sustainable development and recreation for children, as well as floorings and ceilings in homes.
He said the plant is being used in Ghana for bicycles for people, while children use it to commute to schools and other places. Bamboo, Boer said, is also used to process furniture, drinking cups, and other useful items in the home.
Addressing members of the Liberia Chamber of Commerce on Capitol Hill last Friday, the WHH Country Director also called on the Ministry of Agriculture and other related institutions to make bamboo production part of Liberia’s agriculture agenda which will encourage farmers to protect and produce the plant.
Mr. Boer said although bamboo is a natural plant can be grown like other cash crops, such as cocoa, coffee, and rice; it can help to sustain the lives of people economically.
He said the plant can be found in wetlands in Liberia and other parts of Africa; and that Liberians need not to import it but protect and make it as part of their agriculture plants for sustainable development and economic empowerment.
Mr. Boer noted that he has already begun talks with some European investors to come to Liberia and assess bamboo production in the country. He said one thing that could hinder the production process is the lack of adequate electricity supply. However, with the reactivation of the Mount Coffee Hydro plant, he is optimistic that processing and storage facilities will not be a difficult situation to overcome, including exporting of the finished products to Europe and Asia.
Mr. Boer maintained that already his organization has commenced building the capacity of young Liberians on how to make bamboo products a useful part in sustaining their livelihood in Liberia.
He is calling on farmers and land owners not to destroy the plant and said plans are underway to make rattan production part of the country’s resources which will bring huge revenues to the government and improve the lives of many Liberians.
Mr. Boer underscored the need for holistic intervention by both the Government and the community in protecting the hibiscus plant which can be grown in the shortest possible time when the necessary chemicals to protect the plant are available for farmers.
Liberia Chamber of Commerce President Francis Dennis expressed gratitude to the Welt Hunger Hilfe Country Director and said such brilliant ideas will help many Liberians to secure the bamboo plant on their land. He also admonished Mr. Boer to exert all efforts to ensure that many European companies come to Liberia and invests in the plant.
Members of the Liberia Chamber of Commerce including Lebanese-Liberian businessman Tony Hage and others expressed total satisfaction over Mr. Boer’s deliberation and called on the WHH Country Director to extend his ideas and sensitize communities in the leeward counties about the significance of the bamboo plant.