Rouhani calls for moving toward self-sufficiency in agriculture

TEHRAN, Jan. 07 (MNA) – Iranian President Hassan Rouhani called for achieving self-sufficiency in agricultural and livestock products.

He made the remarks Monday in Tehran at a meeting with Iranian Minister of agriculture Mahmoud Hojjati and senior managers of the ministry, the official website of Iranian President reported.

“Many people, and even the educated, think that our country has problems in providing high-tech facilities, while we are confronted with problems in providing forage, corn and livestock inputs, and we are importing a great deal of these products every year,” he regretted.

“In the food sector, we must stand on our own feet and produce our own needs inside the country.”

Appreciating all people who work for the country’s self-sufficiency in wheat production, he noted, “we were the second largest wheat importer in the world, but in recent years, we answered this need domestically.”

He also stated, “our production of sugar has almost doubled and we are on the verge of self-sufficiency.”

The Iranian president said that production of some oilseeds, such as rapeseed, has experienced a sixfold increase, adding, “the media should inform people about national honors.”

President Rouhani also said, “an average increase of 4 million tonnes of agricultural products per year is a big step.”

“300,000 hectares in Khuzestan and Ilam and 46,000hectares in Sistan and Baluchistan province are ready for modern irrigation systems,” he continued.

“Universities and Agriculture Ministry should work together with the priority of providing people's needs,” he said, adding, “despite the annual increase in population and nutritional needs, we face water and land constraints.”

Stating that, “an important part of agricultural and horticultural products can rely on rainfed farming,” he said, “people should not worry about supplying dairy, meat and protein products.”

Stressing that the main burden of the country’s security is on the shoulders of farmers, he continued, “when the word ‘security’ is stated, people usually think of military forces, while a major part of security is provided by the dear farmers.”

Rouhani went on to underscore that the government is responsible towards a farmer that works for people’s food security, adding, “without a doubt, if the farmer is not sure about its crop production and sale, he can’t provide the society with security.”

An important part of the country's food is being smuggled to neighboring countries, he regretted, noting that farmers’ work must be guaranteed through insurance.

MNA/PR

News Code 141272

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