TODAY.AZ / Business

Azerbaijan set to become second hazelnut producer in world

04 October 2019 [12:43] - TODAY.AZ

By Azernews

By Leman Mammadova

Increasing fruit and vegetable production is one of the main priorities of Azerbaijan's economy as the country is developing its non-oil sector.

Azerbaijan has the potential to become the second largest hazelnut producer in the world, Firdovsi Fikratzade, Director of Agricultural Research Center under the Ministry of Agriculture said on October 3.

Fikratzade said that currently, the total area of hazelnut growing is 74,000 hectares, and that 84,000 hectares of land will be established for hazelnut growing in the future.

“Using intensive technologies, we can get 1.5 tons per hectare, which can move Azerbaijan to the second place in the world in the production of hazelnuts after Turkey,” he said.

Some 45,500 tons of hazelnuts were produced in Azerbaijan in 2018. Presently, Azerbaijan is among the top five hazelnut producing countries in the world, holding 4 percent of world hazelnut production.

“Azerbaijan is one of the world's major exporters of hazelnuts after countries such as Turkey, Italy, Spain and the U.S,” Fikratzade said, adding that the main importers of Azerbaijani hazelnuts are European countries, Russia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

He stressed that Turkey currently negotiates with Azerbaijan and Georgia on pricing policy in the production of hazelnuts.

The official made the remarks at an international workshop "Strategic product" dedicated to the development of tomato and hazelnut growing.

As for tomato production, Fikratzade noted that Azerbaijan is among the leading CIS countries producing delicious tomatoes in the open field.

“Tomato was the first non-oil product exported in 2017. Foreign countries' interest in Azerbaijani tomatoes has been increasing since 2004,” he said.

During the event Fikratzade pointed out that currently, 62 percent of Azerbaijan's domestic demand for wheat is covered by local production. However, the government intends to increase the annual wheat production by 200,000 tons.

The two-day workshop was organized by the National Confederation of Entrepreneurs (Employers) Organizations of Azerbaijan (ASK), the Islamic Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Agriculture (ICCIA) and Islamic Development Bank (IsDB).


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