8Natural gas exporter Qatar and Vietnam have set up a US$1 billion fund to invest in sectors including agriculture. Sovereign wealth fund Qatar Investment Authority will provide 90% of the fund's equity, Gulf Times reported, citing Phung The Long, Vietnam's Ambassador to Doha. "We have exchange ideas about setting up an animal farm for breeding cattle and lambs," The Long said.
The company will conduct a feasibility study of the proposed land area, in the Merauke district of Indonesia’s Papua province, before making their final decision. “We have been looking at other locations that might be suitable but Indonesia is first on our list,” a spokesperson said.
Indonesia's Minister of Agriculture and other senior government officials Tuesday said they met with senior members of Saudi Arabia's Binladin Group to discuss the investment group's plans to spend at least $4 billion developing at least 500,000 hectares of Indonesian land for rice production.
Emerging nations are trying to cash in on the global food crisis by getting big importers of crops to effectively lease their farmlands -- a new trend that is already sparking complaints from farmers in some countries who are concerned about their own food supplies.
A consortium of 15 Saudi Arabian investors is ready to take part in the Merauke Integrated Rice Estate (MIRE), injecting at least Rp600 billion ($65.04 million) into the region. The Agriculture Ministry's Secretary General, Hasanuddin Ibrahim, said each investor wanted to open about 5,000 to 10,000 hectares of land in Merauke, Papua.
One would expect China to add food crops, or farm land, into its growing number of arrangements with African nations, which could explain part of China’s support for Robert Mugabe in that potential breadbasket, Zimbabwe (one report states that China has already received rights to farm 250,000 acres, or 1,000 square kilometres, of corn in southern Zimbabwe).
The Solvent Extraction Association, currently visiting South America, will come up with a techno-feasibility report on carrying out contract farming by Indian companies either in Argentina, Paraguay or Uruguay.