Nangarhar University prepares national wheat policy
JALALABAD (Pajhwok): A teacher at the Nangarhar University has prepared a national policy on wheat production and if implemented, the policy would help Afghanistan gain self-sufficiency in the crop.
The five-year plan will be soon presented to the agriculture ministry and the presidential palace for approval.
Nangarhar University chancellor Prof. Babrak Miakhel and the policy author, Prof. Syeda Jan Attiq Abdyani, the agriculture faculty director, explained the proposed plan to journalists at a press conference in Jalalabad, the capital of eastern Nangarhar province, on Thursday.
Abdyani said the policy was prepared after investigation in almost all provinces and its implementation would cost $1.3 billion, with $330 million to be contributed by the private sector and farmers.
The professor said: “Afghanistan annually produces 5.3 million tonnes of wheat, but the requirement is much higher. If our policy is implemented, we will have 200,000 tonnes of surplus wheat.”
He said the reconstruction of irrigation systems and the construction of water reservoirs and warehouses and distribution of improved quality seeds had been recommended in the policy.
“Unfortunately our farmers are facing many problems, they cannot preserve their harvests, cannot buy improved seeds and their produce is sold at low rates,” he said.
Abdyani said bad and good weather conditions had direct impact on wheat production in Afghanistan and with the implementation of the policy would help stabilise wheat yield.
The professor asked farmers to switch to improved quality seeds in order their wheat yield could boost.
Babrak Miakhel said the policy would be shared with the Presidential Palace and efforts would be made for its implementation.
He said similar researches had been done by various faculties of the Nangarhar University and the papers would be shared with the authorities in due course of time.
Afghanistan is an agriculture country and the sector contributes 80 percent to the national economy, but the decades of wars destroyed irrigation systems and dams, causing huge damage to the sector.
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