On 19 October, 57 computers, 57 printers and 57 sticks for internet connection were handed over by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) to the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Tajikistan as part of a European Union funded project to strengthen the Ministry’s institutional capacity.

The Ministry of Agriculture will distribute this equipment to the agricultural departments in the districts to advance collecting data in the fields, which will allow better analysis and reporting system by agricultural experts.

Tajikistan’s agriculture is a highly complex enterprise that has a huge potential and, at the same time, great need to induct new and innovative technologies. Using computers in the entire agriculture value chain from production to food on the table, enhancing production efficiency, processing, storage packaging and transport, retail distribution and consumption can give a boost to the sector’s development.

Improving the availability of quality information and data for agricultural activities will contribute to better decision making and the increased competitiveness of the agricultural industry. More concretely, data collection and analysis will help farmers to plan sowing properly, identify crops for planting and get information about market. The speed to ensure information exchange among agribusiness and the Ministry will be increased. This process will allow to timely respond to the farmers’ needs or develop mitigation plan during disseminating plant diseases and pests.

“Computer equipment has a great role in agriculture,” emphasized Oleg Guchgeldiyev, FAO Representative in Tajikistan. “It is highly influenced by modern technologies and rapidly becoming more and more visible in this sphere. To participate and make informed decisions in the agricultural industry people must have ability to gather and process data.”

Every step of the entire food production chain is interconnected and interacts in a highly complex manner and this is where computers and related software programmes come into play to make agriculture highly efficient and productive, profitable and sustainable over long-term.

“Computer equipment with internet connection will also allow our partners to access the knowledge and information on approaches and technologies available from FAO and other partners at the national and global levels, conduct monitoring for the important market data and use other information for better decision making,” added Guchgeldiyev. “It should consequently help to better use available resources and contribute to achieving production and food security targets. The FAO will ensure that relevant training is provided to move the use of IT equipment, including use of web-based tools, to the new level.”

FAO has a long-standing relation of collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture for the building technical capacity of agricultural experts to uphold international commitments. Joint areas of work include issues related to institutional reform and capacity strengthening of the Ministry of agriculture, using the private-public partnership model reforming State unitarian enterprises, piloting reform packages in four project regions, policy and strategy development.

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