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By Murtland HaleyThe Coconut Festival officially opened yesterday at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre. Business Minister Dominic Gaskin,[url=http://www.cheapjerseysauthenticonline.us@#$%&/]Cheap Jerseys NFL[/url], who addressed the opening, said that expanding the coconut industry can tremendously benefitRepresentatives of the Carnegie School of Home Economics displaying food items made using coconut as the main ingredient.the nation economically.The event formed part of Coconut Awareness Week 2016,[url=http://www.cheapjerseysauthenticonline.us@#$%&/]Cheap NFL Jerseys China[/url],The Minister identified three particular outcomes which the country would experience if the industry is to be taken seriously.He said, ?The exports of more coconuts and coconut products can increase Guyana?s foreign earning; the increased growth and consumption of Guyana?s coconuts and coconut products can reduce spending on imported food,[url=http://www.wholesalenfljerseyssale.us@#$%&/]Wholesale Jerseys[/url], and coconuts may or may not bring tourists to Guyana but coconuts can certainly enhance the experience of visitors to Guyana.?Gaskin said that these three assumptions are worth exploring. He said that collectively,[url=http://www.cheapjerseysshare.us@#$%&/]Cheap Jerseys From China[/url], the three points show that coconuts can make a greater contribution to the nation?s economy if better ways can be found to manage all aspects of the industry.He said that Guyana has been exporting about US$5M worth of coconut products annually over the last two years. According to him, this is mostly in the exportation of dry coconuts.The Business Minister said that from all indications more cultivation, harvesting, processing and exporting of coconuts can be a reality.?It has been reported that global demand for coconuts is increasing at a rate of 10 per cent annually,[url=http://www.cheapestnfljerseys.us@#$%&/]Cheap Jerseys From China[/url], while global production is only increasing at around two per cent.?Gaskin posited that this situation will not last forever. ?So if we are looking to get serious about coconuts, we need to do so now.?He said that foreign earnings are needed to drive Guyana?s economy. According to him,[url=http://www.nfljerseyscheaponline.us@#$%&/]Wholesale NFL Jerseys Online[/url], the country would not be able to grow its economy unless there is a constant increase of money entering the local economy from external sources.Addressing the second point he made earlier, Gaskin said that increasing the local consumption of native products is something every Guyanese can be a part of.?We cannot continue to wean ourselves off of our wholesome home-grown foods in favour of cheaper mass produced and chemically treated and genetically modified foods from faraway places.?Gaskin said that just by substituting local coconut products where possible, Guyana can cut its imports thereby putting less pressure on foreign reserves.Lastly, on the issue of enhancing tourist experience, he said that the coconut can add fun and flavour to outdoor enjoyment to any visitor?s itinerary. He believes that when combined with other aspects of the tourism sector, the nut can enhance the total package offered to foreigners.Also speaking at the event was Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo, who described the launch as a recovery of lost esteem.He said, ?Coconut had fallen victim to one of the most vicious cultural attacks. Some may call it a victim of cultural imperialism.?The PM said that in earlier times, Guyana did not own the technology to advertise coconut or to convert it to exotic oils and creams. As such, products could not have been placed on the international market.?We were told the reason why coconut was not wholesome and it was not good for our bodies or for our beauty, was because there were other types of oils that were superior and that ours had no quality.?Nagamootoo said that it was a cultural norm for coconut to feature in the lives of Guyanese especially those in rural communities. He said that coconut oil was used as hair oil and to facilitate massages of young children.The PM congratulated the Ministry of Business and the Ministry of Agriculture for collaborating to organise the event which culminates on Sunday October 23,[url=http://www.wholesalenfljerseyssale.us@#$%&/]Cheap Jerseys From China[/url], 2016.