(MENAFN - AzerNews) By Aygul Salmanova
Measures will be taken to attract local and foreign investments in citrus fruit production and processing.
These measures are envisaged in the Action Plan on the implementation of the State Program on Citrus Fruit Development for 2018-2025.
This paragraph of the Action Plan will be executed by the Ministry of Economy and Agriculture.
At the same time, according to the Action Plan, existing standards in the citrus industry should be brought into line with international requirements; small-scale farmers and farmers operating in this area should be encouraged to cooperate on voluntary cooperation; contacts with foreign companies with progressive production and export experience should be enhanced and a progressive insurance mechanism should be established.
It also envisages strengthening of scientific support and staffing capacity in the field of citrus fruit growing, improvement of infrastructure provision, state support measures, strengthening of marketing activity and export promotion.
President Ilham Aliyev has signed an order approving the state program for development of citrus fruit growing for 2018-2025.
Mandarins, oranges, kiwi - until recently these juicy fruits were a kind of exotic for Azerbaijan, who can pamper themselves with this juicy fruits only on holidays. However, about 20-30 years ago the country's natural conditions allowed Azerbaijan to grow these exotic fruits at home and became habitual for the diet of Azerbaijanis.
Citrus fruits are very well established in the subtropics of southern region and have truly become ‘Azerbaijani' fruits. Tea growing and cultivation of citrus fruits and vegetable are key sectors for the industry of the Lankaran-Astara economic zone.
Citrus thrives in any season, especially during spring and require sun during the ripening stage, so the country's Lankaran, Astara and Masalli regions are ideal for their growth. The main difficulty for citrus fruit orchards in the mountainous areas of country's southern regions is the frosty weather in the winter months, but in the foothills there is no such a threat.
Today a significant part of citrus crops have to be imported from the countries of the near abroad, for the purchase of which a lot of foreign currency is spent.
Recently, the citrus cultivation sector saw a robust growth in recent years. In 2000, citrus fruits were planted on 1,700 hectares, now they are planted on 2,500 hectares.Last year, lemons were planted on 470 hectares, oranges on 255 hectares and mandarins on 1,700 hectares.
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