Tajikistan is located in Central Asia, with China to its west and Afghanistan to its south. The country’s total land area is 143,100 sq km. Comparatively, it is slightly smaller than Bangladesh, and is about the size of the state of Wisconsin in the U.S. Its climate is mid-latitude continental with hot summers and mild winters – and semiarid to polar in the Pamir Mountains. Of Tajikistan’s total land area, only seven percent is utilized for cultivated crops, while another one percent supports permanent crops such as fruit- and nut-bearing trees. Environmental issues facing the country include inadequate sanitation facilities, increasing levels of soil salinity, industrial pollution and excessive use of pesticides. Tajikistan’s population is approximately 7.3 million, with 67 percent of its labor force dedicated to agriculture. Tajikistan is a poor nation, with one of the lowest per capita GDPs among the 15 former Soviet Union republics. Cotton is the country’s most important crop, but the sector is burdened with debt and obsolete infrastructure. It is estimated that one million laborers travel out of the country regularly for work. Other agricultural products from Tajikistan include grain, fruits, grapes, vegetables and livestock. The EurAsia Division is responsible for IFDC activities in Tajikistan.
IFDC in Tajikistan
IFDC focuses on a broad spectrum of regional activities related to soil nutrient management, private sector-led agribusiness development and resource conservation. Primary emphases are the development of sustainable agricultural production systems for long-term food security and the introduction of improved technologies to increase crop yields and economic returns to farmers.
Current IFDC Projects in Tajikistan
- Productive Agriculture in Tajikistan, 2009-2014
The USAID Productive Agriculture in Tajikistan project is increasing the productivity of traditional agricultural crops and strengthening the capacity and profitability of private sector agribusinesses. The Intensify Farm Productivity (IFP) component is being implemented by IFDC. IFP is increasing crop and beef production along with market-driven opportunities to improve farmers’ living standards through increased income.