Beylagan, November 12, AZERTAC
President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has viewed “Qarabağ Taxıl” LLC pilot grain farm as part of his visit to Beylagan district.
The project attracted a 10 million manat low-interest loan provided by the government. The complex features a 20,000 ton storage, a grain drying system with the capacity of 100 tons per hour and a 6,000 ton logistic center.
“Qarabağ Taxıl” LLC farm occupies a total area of 4,800 hectares in Aghjabadi and Beylagan districts. The company is an affiliate and production line of Saba LLC. Azerbaijan Investment Company owns a 25 per cent stake in the company.
President Ilham Aliyev watched cultivation and harvesting process.
Minister of Economy Shahin Mustafayev informed the head of state of the production process at the farm.
The head of state then viewed stands highlighting the activity of “Qarabağ Taxıl” LLC pilot grain farm.
The project created 130 new jobs, with the average monthly salary of 350 manats.
President Ilham Aliyev met with local residents and staff of the farm, and then posed for photographs with them.
Speech of President Ilham Aliyev
The “Qarabağ Taxıl” farm is the first pilot project in Azerbaijan. It was established a few years ago, and it has been doing well. Today, there are more than 30 large farms in Azerbaijan, which play an important part in our country’s food security.
While becoming familiar with the state of affairs today, I saw that the entire work has been organized at a good level. There is already extensive acreage in use. Previously, these lands were practically not used. This is evidenced by the photographs on these stands. I am told that the yield of wheat here is 57 quintals per hectare. I believe this is a record figure because the average yield in the country is 30 quintals. We think that this is also a good result because in previous years the figure fluctuated around 20-22 quintals. And you have 57 quintals. This indicates that where there is a correct approach, all issues can be resolved at the highest level. The yields here are approaching the level of developed countries.
“Qarabağ Taxıl” is a large farm. We have invested a lot. This includes material support from the state, the allocation of a loan on favorable terms, which is a result of joint activities of the public and private sectors.
Today, the activities of this farm are contributing to food security. Soybeans were planted in this farm for the first time in Azerbaijan. This is a very positive fact. Unfortunately, soybeans were not cultivated in Azerbaijan in previous years even though this is a very profitable sphere and Azerbaijan spends more than 50 million dollars every year to import soybeans. If we provide ourselves with soybeans now, and this task has been set, this money will stay in our country. Secondly, we must export soybeans in the future. The possibilities are there. You, as people engaged in agriculture, are well aware of that.
We will thus provide for our food security. We have yet to fully provide ourselves with wheat. There are objective reasons for that. But we are approaching this goal. At the same time, we should generate major export potential of grain production. Just as we have been exporting fruits, vegetables and other products, we need to export grain products in the future. But, first of all, we certainly need to address the domestic needs.
I can say that all countries are experiencing some concerns in relation to food safety today, because as the world's population grows, so does the demand, while arable lands are not increasing. Of course, we should take serious steps to meet these growing needs. We do not have particularly large areas of land. Therefore, we must make rational use of every patch of land. Not a single inch of land should remain unused. On the other hand, we need to increase the yields. As I have said, in grain production the yield is 57 quintals per hectare. If the yields in our country reach 40-45 quintals, we can address our needs with the existing crop areas. What do yields depend on? We need to take correct agronomic measures. We provide hardware – you have the latest equipment from leading manufacturers. There is fertilizer. It is necessary to organize the work properly. The government, for its part, is doing everything it can. Farmers are exempt from all taxes except for the land tax. The government provides concessional subsidies, fertilizer and fuel to farmers. The National Fund for Entrepreneurship Support allocates soft loans. Infrastructure is being created. This road was built by the government. Other infrastructure projects are being implemented as well. Projects related to electricity are being executed, so that processing enterprises could develop. The state provides support. This will make things go even faster.
Agricultural development is a priority area for us. We need to make rational use of the available land fund. We are trying to engage new acreage, and work in this direction is progressing well. We will provide for our own needs. In addition, we will generate great export potential.
Beylagan District has excellent conditions for the development of agriculture. There are vast areas of land. Cotton-growing is developing fast in Beylagan now. Cotton will be planted on thousands of hectares of land this year and especially next year. This brings farmers an income.
Other important sectors are also in the spotlight. Farmers and the rural population are very interested in sericulture these days. Serious steps are being taken in this direction as well. This also improves the standard of living of our people. We need to fully provide ourselves with sugar beet, so that our sugar factory could operate on local raw materials. This work is and should be carried out.
Every state, including Azerbaijan, should provide for its own food security. We are already very close to achieving this goal. So far we provide ourselves with dairy products by about 80 per cent. We have yet to fully provide ourselves with wheat. Azerbaijan produces other basic food products as well.
I congratulate you on the work done. I do hope that “Qarabağ Taxıl” further expands its activities both in this area and beyond. You are going an excellent job and there are good results. I have come here to see these results firsthand and congratulate you on the results and successes achieved.