MADAGASCAR – Madagascar has signed a memorandum of understanding with South Korea aimed at enhancing the island nation’s rice production capabilities.

Ratohiarijaona Suzelin, Madagascar’s Minister of Agriculture, formalized the agreement with her South Korean counterpart, Song Mi Ryeong, on June 5, during the inaugural South Korea-Africa summit held in Seoul.

The summit aimed to strengthen ties between South Korea and African nations through collaborative projects in various sectors, including agriculture, technology, and education.

According to Suzelin, signing this agreement is a significant milestone in Madagascar’s journey towards self-sufficiency in cereal production, marking a crucial step in reducing its import dependency.

This partnership, with its focus on increasing rice yields, improving the seed supply and production system, and strengthening the capacities of rice farmers, holds the promise of a brighter future for the rice industry in Madagascar.

Minister Ratohiarijaona also highlighted that the agreement includes the establishment of advanced rice production complexes in several key rice-producing regions of Madagascar, namely Vakinankaratra, Sofia, Alaotra Mangoro, Itasy, and Bas Mangoky.

The entire rice production and marketing process will be implemented at these rice complexes, including the storage of seeds, inputs, and harvests, as well as the installation of conservation sites and processing facilities,” explained Minister Ratohiarijaona.

Madagascar, the second-largest rice producer in sub-Saharan Africa after Nigeria, produces nearly 90% of its rice consumption, amounting to approximately 3.7 million tonnes per year, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

This partnership with South Korea is not just a bilateral agreement, but a part of a broader initiative known as the “K-Ricebelt Project,” a testament to the shared commitment of South Korea and more than eight African countries to support rice development across the continent.

The collaboration is expected to significantly boost Madagascar’s rice industry, improving food security and contributing to the country’s economic development.

The MOU comes as the country expects the paddy rice harvest to reach 5.8 million tonnes at the end of the 2023/2024 rice growing season, according to Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock data.

According to the Ministry, if the forecast comes true, would represent an increase of 10.53% compared to the stock produced a year earlier and would confirm the good dynamics of the sector.


For all the latest grains industry news from Africa, the Middle East, and the World, subscribe to our weekly NEWSLETTERS, follow us on LinkedIn, and subscribe to our YouTube channel.