Procurement of One Land Terracing Spider Excavator
The dry land farms in Bhutan, which so far are not terraced, are vulnerable to land degradation because of excessive erosion. Hence, terracing of dry land farms is urgently needed. Since manual terracing is very labour intensive and farm labour is scarce, manual terracing of dry land farms has so far not been a viable option. On the other hand, if dry land farms are not terraced soon, the productive quality of these farms will deteriorate because of excessive soil erosion, which in turn will compound the problem of rural poverty as well as rural-urban migration. Hence, the principal component of the project will be mechanization of terracing of dry land farms to ensure sustainable agricultural development through soil conservation. Soil erosion will be controlled through terracing, while soil fertility will be enriched by replenishing nutrients organically. Additional farmland will be created and enable the very poor farmers, especially in the East of Bhutan, where the country is very rugged, steep and farmland is scarce, to achieve a better-bigger crop, and the possibility to market, what is not needed to feed the family (cash income, poverty alleviation). As well as that through terracing overland flow will be checked to minimize land slides and gullies.
The project objective is to procure one Spider Excavator (with the Equipment for terracing in steep terrain), train a Bhutanese Operator in Switzerland for 10 days and to provide on the job training in Bhutan for about 15 days to the Bhutanese Operator(s) by an experienced Operator from the Supplier. The Excavator will be used by the Government to terrace the dry land farms to meet the above mentioned objectives. The Ministry of Agriculture shall regularly update ACO, Thimphu on the achievements of the overall objectives of the dry land terracing programme.