The USAID (United States Agency for International Development) will continue to harness Uzbekistan’s export potential through its recently launched Agribusiness Development Activity project, USAID told Trend.
It was noted that over the past decade, USAID played a pivotal role in developing Uzbekistan’s horticulture sub-sector; cold storage capacity; and supporting small, medium, and large-scale facilities throughout the country that now provide a diverse array of offerings for different storage volumes and needs.
From 2015 to 2020, USAID’s Agricultural Value Chain activity contributed to increased horticultural exports by 250 percent. USAID supported 510 organizations and businesses, linking Uzbek exporters and consolidators to global buyers ready to pay higher prices for quality products.
"With its rich soil, temperate climate, and abundance of fruits and vegetables, Uzbekistan has the potential to become Central Asia’s leading exporter of high value horticulture. Uzbekistan is diversifying its agricultural base by increasing production of higher value-added crops," the USAID said.
In addition, recent estimates indicate that fruit and vegetable production in Uzbekistan accounts for as much as 50 percent of the value of crop production and over 35 percent of the country’s agricultural export value.
"Not only do these crops generate higher incomes per unit of land than traditional crops, but they also provide better-paid jobs, and an important source of all-season employment in rural areas and create a significant number of jobs for women," USAID stressed.
Also, USAID added that since Uzbekistan is landlocked, transportation to key markets in Asia and Europe is one of the most significant barriers to increasing horticultural exports, especially for fresh fruits.
"To reduce the transportation and logistics barriers for Uzbekistani exporters eager to test new markets, USAID introduced pallet-ready technologies and market-specific packing materials to facilitate shipments," the message said.
Moreover, USAID’s activities helped farmers achieve immediate results by applying improved techniques and better technology to disease-resistant plants. USAID trained households to dry fruits and introduced affordable methods for creating on-farm cold storage facilities.
"Leveraging the gains made in advancing Uzbekistan’s exports through USAID’s Agricultural Value Chain activity, USAID will continue to harness the country’s export potential through its recently launched Agribusiness Development Activity project," USAID said.
The Agribusiness Development Activity supports Uzbekistan’s private sector, while enabling the country to create meaningful jobs in the formal economy for its burgeoning workforce. It is noted that these efforts are focused on increasing value-added production within Uzbekistan, engaging vulnerable populations, including youth and women, linking educational institutions with the private sector, and fostering a favorable environment for agriculture.
Follow us on Twitter @AzerNewsAz