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Coconut Technology Needs And Technology Transfer Experience In The Pacific Region

The coconut continuous to be an important subsistence and export agricultural commodity for countries of the Pacific region but at a much reduced level nowadays. In line with this reduced. importance is the lower level of attention given to research and development (R &D) of the crop in almost all countries except Papua New Guinea where a specialised institute, the Coconut and Cocoa Research Institute (CCRI) gives due attention to R & D requirements including attention to technology transfer. Many reasons are attributed to the decline in both the crop's importance and the reduced attention to it, but the most important relates to the fluctuating market prices the crop continues to receive due to international market forces and the low economic returns it receives which has made coconuts unattractive to countries and their farming communities. The paper examines the developments in coconut R & D in the region from being nationally focussed to increasing regional approaches especially in recent times via networks and networking. Possible adaptable coconut technologies are identified which hold promise. However, major weaknesses in the communications systems found in the region, which are highlighted as having strong negative influences regards technology transfer, will need to be addressed if the situation is to improve.

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