To find out more about the Grain Drive Project for Kiribati Click Here

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We are looking for feedback/ideas for potential projects to assist Kiribati.
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Kiribati is a beautiful and wondrous place with a unique culture.

However, most of the population are unemployed and do not have safe drinking water, sanitation or electricity. Physical assets are lacking or are in complete disarray.

Kiribati's severe difficulties cannot all be laid at the door of climate change. Overcrowding, unemployment, dwindling fresh water, ramshackle roads, poor quality houses and disease negatively impact Kiribati. The impact of climate change might be the tipping point which in combination with these already severe problems may devastate Kiribati.

This website is to focus on the plight of the people - social, economic and environmental.

By examining the issues I endeavour to create solutions to assist. The more understanding you have of another's plight the easier it is to show kindness and compassion. I feel compelled to help these people and I hope that you do too.

Potential Project to Help Kiribati

Grain Drive Project


Lack of land prevents large-scale agriculture.

Infertile soil constrain agricultural production and makes it difficult to grow fruit and vegetables.

Livestock and poultry productions is extremely difficult because there is a lack of naturally occurring animal feed in Kiribati.

Consequence of Problem

Most of the food needed for Kiribati is imported from overseas because agricultural production in Kiribati is very low. Read more...

Importing food from overseas is very expensive, can result in food shortages and cause food security issues. Read more...

Much of the imported food is nutritionally poor leading to poor health. This is a cause of the high number of diabetes, obesity and heart diseases cases in Kiribati. Read more...

Buying food from overseas is a continuing financial drain on Kiribati as this is money that leaves the country. Like a bank account, the money is continually "withdrawn" from the country and makes the country poorer. Without addressing this major issue Kiribati will remain in a negative spiral. Read more...

Food constraints and high cost food have a disproportionate impact on the poor because they spend a larger proportion of their income on food. Food price spikes also impact the poor substantially more than richer families. Read more...

How This Project Works

Initially, the project will only be beneficial to the inner Gilbert Islands district of Kiribati due to the logistics of servicing the other outer islands.

This project is based on importing grains into Kiribati. The rest of the food production occurs in Kiribati.

These grains are used to produce feed for the production of goats, chickens (meat and eggs), dairy cows and pigs.

The manure is composted to create a growing medium for fruits and vegetables. The Taiwan Technical Mission has shown that certain foods can be produced successfully in Kiribati under appropriate conditions using compost.

Low impact farming (many small areas farmed rather than a few large ones) will be utilised between coconut palms to minimise the impact on the environment. Some coconut palms may need to be trimmed/thinned to permit sunlight to enter the growing area. Due to this there will be relatively low mechanisation however, labour costs in Kiribati are low therefore this will not be a large cost burden. The low mechanisation is beneficial to economic growth as it aids employment.

The final step is the distribution of the food. The main distribution method will be by opening numerous large "restaurants" where the food is cooked for the people. This food will be provided at low cost for local people to eat in the restaurant (not to take away).

A cash revenue stream will be provided by having co-located stores selling uncooked produce directly to the public for home consumption.

The major cost for this project is purchasing and importing grain into Kiribati.

Expected Results of the Project

It should be noted that not all food types are capable of being grown in Kiribati - for instance, grains. However, the more food that is grown in Kiribati the cheaper the food will be and the larger the positive impact on the Kiribati economy.

The by-product of growing the animals is the manure which produces material that can be utilised to grow fruit and vegetables.

This project addresses food shortages and food security.

Food is less expensive to purchase in Kiribati. This is partly due to reduced transport costs. The other main reason for the cost decrease is that the grain is value added to create a more valuable food - Kiribati is providing a large component of the manufacturing process rather than paying another country to do this for them.

Food quality increases. Food variety and freshness improves. Eating more nutritious food improves health and well-being.

Making food low cost at the "restaurants" is important for assisting poor people to have a nutritional diet. This will improve their health by reducing diabetes, obesity and heart diseases.

A cash revenue stream is created by selling food for home consumption. This is targeted at "richer" families.

Jobs are created as people are needed to grow and distribute the food. This has a positive multiplier effect on the Kiribati economy.

Other local businesses may develop to service the creation and distribution of food thereby increasing the Kiribati economy.

The Kiribati balance of payments will improve because less food will be imported from overseas. This is import substitution and is important long term for Kiribati.

By taking a "raw" material such as grain and value adding to it by producing other food creates a multiplier effect on the Kiribati economy because the money stays in Kiribati rather than leaving the country.


Please let me know what you think or any ideas to improve the project.
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Coconut is the most abundant plant in Kiribati


Most of the working population is involved in subsistence agriculture. Agricultural production is constrained by inherently poor soil conditions, lack of surface water sources, land tenure and the geographical scattered nature of the islands.

Small Stores

Bubuti makes it difficult to begin as small business


Bubuti occurs when an extended family member in need makes a "non-refusable request" to another family member who has to comply. Non-compliant family members would be shamed and ostracised as they were said to lack compassion. Bubuti can act as a tax on working people and reduce their willingness to invest in business and has damaged economic growth.


Church income is utilized to build and maintain elaborate buildings


A cash economy is increasingly replacing the traditional subsistence lifestyle. Education and the church are the two main areas of expenditure.

Newspaper and Radio Station

Kiribati Newstar newspaper and FM89 radio station are located in this building


Kiribati covers a vast distance. The large distances between the islands means that many people have little access to electronic communications. Kiribati does not have access to a submarine fibre optical cable so must rely on satellite for telecommunication and internet. This increases the cost of communication.

Small Stores

Shops are small and often scattered along the roadside


Kiribati is one of the poorest and most remote microstates in the Pacific. Economic activity in Kiribati is constrained by isolation, limited natural resources and a fragile environment. A large proportion of the population are unemployed.




Kiribati relies on imported fuels for electricity generation, transport and cooking. Electricity from the grid serves about half of the households in Kiribati. Solar PV is an important source of energy in outer islands.


Kiribati is a long distance from the rest of the world


Kiribati is significantly disadvantaged by distance from global markets. This is exacerbated by the dispersion of its many islands.


The roads are full of potholes


Overall infrastructure in Kiribati is quite rudimentary. The physical infrastructure necessary for economic development - electricity, transport (roads, ports and airports), water supply and sanitation is weak in Kiribati.


Kiribati is spread over a wide area

Land Ownership

Gaining access to land is one of the major constraints for economic development in Kiribati.




Currently, tourism is nearly non-existent in Kiribati. Air transportation presents a major constraint for tourism development as Kiribati is not located on major air routes.


A constant stream of minivans service South Tarawa from Betio to Buota (the end of the road)


Given the geographical dispersion and isolation of Kiribati, transportation is very important for the people and government. However, running and sustaining a transportation system in Kiribati is very expensive.


Climate Change

Climate Change

Climate change is one of Kiribati's most pressing issues. The impacts of climate change to the very sustainability of the atolls of Kiribati is very real. Climate change is a challenge which impacts not only the environment but also affects economic, social and political development.


There appears to be rubbish all over South Tarawa

Waste Management

Poor waste management is one of the major environmental problems in Kiribati. It poses a serious threat to health, erodes the economy, affects future development and is a deterrent to tourism.

Tap Water

The treated tap water is not suitable for drinking and contains particles


Among the Pacific Island nations, Kiribati has the lowest proportion of households with sustainable access to an improved water source such as piped water, protected well and rainwater. Unsafe water is the main cause of water borne diseases in Kiribati.


Domestic Violence

Domestic Violence

Kiribati women face a high level of domestic violence. More than 68 per cent of women aged 15 to 49 years who had been in a partnership had experienced physical or sexual violence.



The Kiribati Government acknowledges the importance of providing a relevant and quality education for all children in improving the socio-economic outlook for the country as a whole. A qualified domestic work force is imperative for Kiribati to progress. Currently, Kiribati's economic prospects are hampered by low skill levels.



Health indicators are gradually improving in Kiribati. However, Kiribati has low life expectancy, the highest under five mortality rate in the Pacific and a high incidence of nutrition related diseases. Poverty, overcrowding and the adoption of Western style diets have negative health consequences in Kiribati.


The children are happy and friendly


Population growth remains high at 1.8 per cent a year. High fertility is a key cause of this rapid population growth. Migration to South Tarawa has contributed to poor housing and sanitary conditions. This overcrowding is a major contributor to disease and impacts the water lens.

Traditional Houses

A large proportion of the Kiribati population live in traditional housing even in urban areas


Poverty in Kiribati does not mean hunger or destitution in the traditional sense but rather that many households are struggling to meet their basic living expenses on a daily or weekly basis. It is estimated that around one-in-five households and almost one-in-four of the population of Kiribati may be living below the basic needs poverty line. Poverty of opportunity is widespread in Kiribati as there is limited economic opportunities for earning an income.

Well Pumps

Some wells have pumps to help distribute the water


The majority of the population in rural areas use the beach for defecation. Flush toilets are used mostly in urban areas but a high proportion of the population in urban areas still use the beach and the bush. Defecation at the beach and in the bush increases the spread of water borne diseases especially diarrhoeal diseases.