A meeting was held with representatives of large grain farms and agroparks at the Ministry of Agriculture of Azerbaijan, Trend reports referring to the ministry. The meeting, chaired by Deputy Minister of Agriculture Ilham Guliyev, was devoted to the issues of harvesting and technical support, among other topics.
During the meeting, representatives of large grain farms were informed that starting from this grain harvest season, preference will be given to plots of up to 50 hectares in harvesting with combines and equipment owned by Agroleasing, and only after that will the large grain farms be served. Representatives of agroparks were advised to purchase their own combines via leasing. It was emphasized that in accordance with the new rules, large grain farms can now buy agricultural equipment at a discount of 40 percent, subject to payment of 20 percent of the cost of equipment. They can pay the remaining amount for a long period and without interest.
Head of the Public Relations and Information Department of Azerbaijan's Agriculture Ministry, Vugar Huseynov noted that thanks to the steps taken, the problems arising during the last harvest season will not occur this year. "Last year, we faced a problem of combine harvesting in agriculture. As a ministry, we have analyzed the past year and determined where the problem was. Accordingly, we have decided to apply the relevant new rules. Previously, combines were leased on the eve of the harvest. That is, citizens invested some money on combines at the base of the agronomist and seasoned them to rebuild their grains or someone else's field. Having analyzed this situation, we decided that the combines will not be leased to big farms with more than 50 hectares. Because these combines are intended for socially-oriented purposes and will be given to less than 50 hectares. A person with over 50 hectares has enough money to invest. These people can buy combines,” he said.
According to Huseynov, rules for the purchase of agricultural equipment are simplified. "Under the decree signed by President Ilham Aliyev at the end of last year, the agricultural machinery market was liberalized. Previously, discounts were applied to techniques used for agroleasing. Now, according to new rules, the state will apply a 40% discount to any supplier purchasing the equipment from the company. Also, the rules for the purchase of technique are simplified. Thus, 20% will be prepayment, 40% will be donated by the state, and the remaining 40% will be loaned for 5 years. The person purchasing the technique pays principal amount of the loan, and the Ministry of Agriculture pays the interest. It should be noted that after the liberalization of the technical market, equipment is cheaper. That is, if a combine was 192,000 manats, its cost is now 169,000 manats. The analysis of the number of combines in the country was carried out. The number of combines in agroleasing, the number of individuals and large companies were defined. The main goal is to avoid any problems during the next harvest,” he added.
Agricultural expert Gadir Bayramli stressed the importance of introducing a new approach to the development of this field. "Agriculture should be developed intensively and not extensively. Of course, giving concessional techniques in the field of grain has some positive aspects. But in general, steps should be taken to increase the production of grain and solve other problems in this area. First, our lands should be inventoried and their quality levels should be determined. Farmers should be provided with both fertilizer and educated agronomists as the productivity in most regions of the country is low. We have very few farms where the harvest of grain is over 40-50 centners. The average statistical indicator for the country is 30 centners, however, according to the real indicator, in many regions the product is less than 20 centners. It is necessary to strengthen agrotechnical measures to increase productivity. At present the step taken is very good, farmers get technical concessions. But on the other hand, it is better to apply long-term, low-interest loans to farmers and apply agrarian insurance," he said.
The expert suggested that the production of the necessary equipment for agriculture will start. "Currently, most of the equipment used in agriculture is imported. I think it is necessary to gradually switch to the production of these technical equipment. Because our country has experience in this field. Of course, the switch can not be done at once. But some attempts can be made. While the production is in our own country, the concessions to farmers are also high. If we carry out these tasks in a complex way, we can achieve the desired outcome," added Bayramli.