Minister: Development of agribusiness one of priorities of socio-economic dev’t policy [PHOTO]
By Ayya Lmahamad
It is one of the priority tasks of the socio-economic development policy to create an even more favorable environment for the development of agribusiness in the country, Azerbaijani Agriculture Minister Inam Karimov said, Azernews reports.
He made the remarks during the public discussion on the “Agribusiness: new opportunities and modern challenges” topic organized by the Public Council under the Small and Medium Business Development Agency, Agriculture Ministry, and National Confederation of Entrepreneurs Organizations.
“New challenges have emerged in the world, including economic, environmental, and climate change. Our goal is to constantly maintain a new and modern agribusiness environment in accordance with new challenges,” he said.
He added that such public discussions are important in terms of identifying methods and tools to overcome challenges, as well as studying international and local experience, the current situation, and opportunities. In addition, Inam Karimov spoke about the support measures implemented in the agribusiness sector.
Moreover, speaking at the event, National Confederation of Entrepreneurs Organizations President Mammad Musayev noted that 35 percent of the employed population works in agriculture. He added that loans worth AZN598.8 million ($352.2m) were allocated to agriculture, which makes up 3.1 percent of the total volume of loan investments.
“Despite the coverage of a large part of the employed population, the credit level in this sector is unsatisfactory. Businessmen working in this sector offer to improve the insurance mechanism for lending, which can also help to achieve a solution to the collateral problem,” he said.
In his turn, Small and Medium Business Development Agency Board Chairman Orkhan Mammadov informed about the agency’s support mechanisms aimed at the establishment and development of agribusiness and shared his views on the development of business in the production areas, processing, and sale of agricultural products, problems faced by business entities, and made a number of suggestions.
“Insufficient application of the agricultural insurance mechanism, difficulties associated with irrigation water, insufficient access to quality advisory services in the agronomy, the need to improve subsidies and other financing mechanisms, difficulties with the documentation procedure in the food security field, depreciation of technological equipment, etc, are the main issues of concern to entrepreneurs,” he said.
Additionally, Public Council Chairman Farhad Garashev stated that public discussions on priority topics will continue in the coming months with the participation of small and medium businesses operating in various sectors of the economy, specialized government agencies, and civil society institutions.
The event was attended by representatives of public and private structures and business associations working in the field of agriculture.
At the event entrepreneurs' proposals on the development of the industry and the difficulties they encountered were listened to, and the questions of entrepreneurs were answered by representatives of the relevant government agencies.
Ayya Lmahamad is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @AyyaLmahamad
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