The Government of Azerbaijan, EU, and UNDP team up to help improve the livelihoods of vegetable and fruit growers in the Lankaran-Astara Economic Region
Lankaran, 1 December 2021 – The European Union (EU), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and the Ministry of Agriculture of Azerbaijan have signed a new project worth EUR 5.0 million under the "EU for Lankaran” programme to help develop modern and competitive fruit and vegetable sector in the Lankaran Economic Region (LER).
The four-year project titled the “Promoting Competitiveness, Collaboration, and Modernization in Fruit and Vegetable Sector in Lankaran Economic Region” is funded by the EU and implemented by UNDP together with the Azerbaijan’s Ministry of Agriculture.
The kick-off event of this project is organised in Lankaran and brought together the EU and government partners, and media representatives.
In her opening remarks, the Deputy Minister of Agriculture stressed the importance of
the initiatives focused on food security in Azerbaijan and their direct impacts to better livelihoods of people in regions.
“The EU is continuously supporting Azerbaijan to move to a new economic structure driven by a diversified, efficient and modernised non-oil sector. Our new programme for Lankaran is one of these substantive investments placed supporting this purpose”, said the EU Ambassador to Azerbaijan Peter Michalko. “Lankaran has an undisputed potential in the production of high-value horticultural produce. This EU programme will focus on enhancing the competitiveness and value-added of the fruit and vegetable sector of the region in a sustainable manner and will continue benefit many farmers and producers”.
The project will support to build regional farmer networks and collaborative undertakings; to introduce innovation in the F&V sector; and to enhance capacity building of farmers and producers on use of new key technologies in the area. The project aims to help professionalise and modernise these grouped formations of growers and processors of the sector and support them produce safe, high quality and marketable food supplies, aligned with domestic and external markets’ demands.
The project will primarily support small-medium scale farmers in rural areas of the region and MSMEs.
“Overall, we expect that at least 3,000 people including producers, workers and other involved actors will benefit from the results that the project will bring at all levels”, UNDP Resident Representative a.i. Charu Bist noted. “Ensuring new opportunities for women and men farmers, and SMEs will allow to create additional jobs in local communities and will contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals by helping to improve the welfare of rural people in the region”.
This project is fully funded by the EU under its “EU for Lankaran” Programme and will end
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