By Abdul Kerimkhanov
This year farmers of Uzbekistan managed to harvest 6.12 million tons of grain and 2.3 million tons of cotton despite all the difficulties, President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev stated in his congratulation to agricultural workers.
The head of Uzbekistan noted that 8.66 million tons of vegetables and 2.41 million tons of potatoes were also grown in the country.
As the president said, the volume of harvesting melons and gourds amounted to 1.6 million tons, fruit - 2.1 million tons and grapes - 1.31 million tons. Farmers produced 18,000 tons of cocoons, 1.78 million tons of meat, 7.83 million tons of milk.
Shavkat Mirziyoyev added that, over the year of hard work, agricultural products totalled 58.18 trillion sums ($7 billion).
In the current season, preferential loans were granted to grain farms in the amount of 1.33 trillion soums ($160 million), which is 142 percent more compared to last year, cotton-growing farms - 5.138 trillion soums ($619 million), or 2.4 times more than last year.
“Next year it is planned to allocate almost 1.7 trillion soums ($205 million) from the State budget to improve the ameliorative state of irrigated lands, as well as $ 84 million from international financial institutions,” said the president.
The head of Uzbekistan noted that in the next two years stable irrigation of 1,2 million hectares will be ensured, saving 1.7 billion cubic meters of water per year, and the reclamation condition of 600,000 hectares of land will improve.
Next year, a number of investment projects with a total value of $ 1.87 billion are planned to be realized in the sphere, which indicates how significant the amount of work ahead and responsibility high, the head of state added.
Because of the risks associated with a one-crop economy as well as from considerations of food security for the population, Uzbekistan has been trying to diversify its production of other agricultural products, while reducing cotton production.
Thus, Uzbekistan aims to increase production of grain crops up to 8.5 million tons with the growth rate of 16.4 percent by 2020 due to optimization of lands and introduction of modern agriculture technologies. It is also planned to increase production of potatoes by 35 percent, other vegetables by 30 percent, fruits and grapes 21.5 percent, meat by 26.2 percent, milk by 47.3 percent, eggs by 74.5 percent and fish by 2.5 times.
Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94
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