BISHKEK (TCA) — A meeting to strengthen the trade and commercial affairs on the rice value chain was recently held with the participation of a delegation from Iran and local rice producers of the Uzgen district of Kyrgyzstan’s southern Osh oblast, the UNDP in the Kyrgyz Republic reported.
At the meeting, the Iranian delegation discussed in details and gave an overview of modern technology and equipment for rice processing and the possibility of their use in Kyrgyzstan.
As today Iran is one of the leading countries in rice production and processing, the ideas of further cooperation and establishing export channels for Uzgen rice were discussed during the meeting.
“Rice is one of the most important food crops in the Central and West Asia region and demand for rice is growing fast. International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) prognosticates the rice consumption in this region will increase from about 9 million tons at present to 12 million tons by 2020, which is more than 33% comparing with the present,” said the Iranian representative, Dr. Abas Shagdi. “By 2035 the demand would grow up to 16.6 million tons, which is more than 84%.”
The activities of UNDP’s “Aid for Trade” project are aimed at improving the economic situation of Kyrgyz farmers, strengthening the capacity of agricultural producers in terms of low profitability of production and processing, stabilization of yields, achieving lower production costs and more equitable prices.
“To solve the problems hindering promotion of products to foreign markets, you need to implement a package of measures to enhance the capacity of rice producers by improving the quality of products, introducing of international quality standards, increasing of production volumes and further brand promotion. Assistance in achieving these goals will contribute to sustainable sales and exports, thereby extracting more benefits from trade and creating new jobs,” said UNDP “Aid for Trade” project coordinator in Osh oblast Azamat Kasymov.
The UNDP “Aid for Trade” project funded by the Government of Finland is a part of the regional programme that includes Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, which promotes implementation of sustainable development approaches in trade policy with regard to regional and international trade agreements and a focus on the export development.