Saparkhan Omarov took part in the II Meeting of Ministers of Agriculture of Central Asia "Digital Agriculture: Opportunities and Challenges"
The meeting was attended by the ministers of agriculture of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, as well as representatives of the UN, the World Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Eurasian, Asian and Islamic Development Banks, and the International Fund for Agricultural Development.
The purpose of the meeting is to help FAO member states in Central Asia reach a common understanding of the requirements for the design and implementation of digital agriculture strategies. In addition, the participants shared good practices and identified the potential for intraregional cooperation in the implementation of innovative digital technologies in the short term.
In his speech, the head of the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Saparkhan Omarov, spoke about the state policy of Kazakhstan in the field of digitalization, including agriculture, spoke about the position of the Ministry of Agriculture on the introduction of new technologies in the agro-industrial complex, as well as about IT projects successfully implemented in rural areas.
“Digital innovation has tremendous potential for economic growth through precision, automation and new control capabilities. Therefore, digitalization in Kazakhstan is considered as the main way to diversify the national economy, its reorientation from a raw material to an industrial service model. The Ministry of Agriculture takes a proactive position in the implementation of digitalization focused on the farmer and simplification of his activities, ”S. Omarov said.
The proactivity of the ministry, he said, lies in the maximum automation of the processes of state administration, regulation and state services. In addition, the department is working on the introduction of precision agriculture, scaling the project of "digital farms" in all regions of the country.
“A Kazakhstani farmer strives to think and keep pace with modern technological realities. The Ministry of Agriculture recommends and motivates to introduce the latest equipment, purchase smart systems, use management IT solutions. In livestock farming, the use of smart systems gave an increase in milk yield and calf yield by more than 20%, in crop production thanks to new technologies at pilot sites it was possible to get up to 30% more harvest, while the farmer's costs were reduced by 20%, ”the minister added.
The head of the Ministry of Agriculture listed large projects that have already been implemented: automation of processes in all 16 areas of agricultural subsidies, an online grain sale platform, an application of the Kazhydrometcenter with the function of recommending sowing dates, informing about the reserves of productive moisture in the soil, launching a remote sensing system, etc.
In addition, a system of traceability of agricultural products is at the stage of implementation, which will ensure food and food safety and transparency of export / import of products, as well as a labeling system for agricultural products, which will protect the market from counterfeit goods. In the near future, it is planned to launch an electronic trading platform for agricultural products, which will increase the volume of direct sales up to 20%, excluding the link of unscrupulous intermediaries.
Also, the Ministry of Agriculture introduced subsidies for the purchase of digital equipment and the latest technological agricultural machinery by farmers, organized a number of measures to develop human capital, increase digital literacy of farmers and train specialists in digital disciplines in the agricultural sector.
“The current level of digitalization of the state administration of the agro-industrial complex allows us to positively assess the prospect of introducing digital technologies in agriculture. At the same time, Kazakhstan is open to involving the best players in this process, those who have achieved success at the international level. Mutual exchange will provide our countries with the opportunity to learn from the accumulated experience and catch up. Therefore, it is so important to determine the strategic directions of intraregional cooperation in the field of digitalization of agriculture, ”concluded Saparkhan Omarov.