August 30, 2012 – Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic – The United States Agency for International Development (USAID), in close cooperation with the Government of the Kyrgyz Republic (GoK), has plans to distribute agricultural equipment to 14 selected seed farms from all seven Kyrgyz provinces as part of the Economic Development Fund (EDF) Program. EDF is a component of IFDC’s Kyrgyz Agro-Input Enterprise Development (KAED) project. The program will help to ensure a sustainable seed industry in the country. The participating seed farms are helping meet the domestic market needs for high quality seed and will expand opportunities for export to regional and international markets.
USAID awarded IFDC the Agricultural Seed Investment Support modification under EDF Phase II, which extended the KAED project for a third year. This new seed support initiative fits well with the ongoing scope of project work and greatly reinforces the effort to achieve the current project objectives – to improve access to essential yield-enhancing agricultural inputs and to enhance food security.
Under KAED’s EDF program, 94 agricultural machines (including 14 tractors, 11 plows, five disks, seven internal cultivators, nine fertilizer spreaders, 12 drills, 12 combine harvesters, five potato harvesting machines and 11 seed cleaners) will be delivered to seed farms throughout the Kyrgyz Republic.
The opening ceremony of this event took place in front of the Government House in the capital city of Bishkek on August 28. Acting Prime Minister Omurbek Babanov; Minister of Agriculture and Land Reclamation of the Kyrgyz Republic Askarbek Djanybekov; U.S. Chargé d’Affaires Laura Griesmer; and USAID Mission Director Carey Gordon attended the ceremony. Some of the newly acquired agricultural equipment was displayed at the event.
Babanov talked about the EDF Phase II Program and emphasized the importance of USAID assistance. He said, “The 14 seed farms that this program supports will become a driving force that will propel the agricultural sector in Kyrgyzstan forward.”
The program was jointly designed by USAID and the GoK and is being implemented by IFDC and the Kyrgyz Ministry of Agriculture.
KAED is working to extend the gains achieved under KAED I and II and to accelerate progress in improved food security and increased farmer income. The original KAED project (2001–2008) began in the Ferghana Valley, southern Kyrgyzstan, and is now also implemented in northern Kyrgyzstan. KAED II (2008–2010) encouraged Kyrgyz farmers to adopt practices that would increase food production and improve animal health and rural incomes.
IFDC, headquartered in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, USA, is a public international organization, governed by an international board of directors with representation from developed and developing countries. The nonprofit Center, with over 700 employees in more than 35 countries in Africa and Eurasia, is supported by various bilateral and multilateral aid agencies, private foundations and national governments. IFDC focuses on increasing and sustaining food security and agricultural productivity in developing countries through the development and transfer of effective and environmentally sound crop nutrient technology and agribusiness expertise.
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