Subject: LUSA: Brazilian Project Aims to Boost Coffee Production

19 Mar 02 19:28 East Timor: Brazilian Project Aims to Boost Coffee Production

A Brazilian organization hopes to develop a euros 113 million project to increase the productivity of East Timor`s coffee, considered to be among the world`s best.

Daniel Gonçalves, a technician with the Brazilian Cooperation Agency (ABC), said the project is in its final stages and will be implemented in April after legal formalities are dealt with. The ABC would train Timorese technicians in Brazilian coffee growing methods, Gonçalves added.

The Brazilian said Timor`s coffee was organically produced and this accounted for its excellent reputation. Timor wanted to focus on this market niche.

Coffee is Timor`s main export but the 5,000 tonnes exported annually is a small proportion of world production. Gonçalves explained this low output was due to old plantations and "a small intervention could increase production significantly".

CJB/CMC -Lusa-

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