Agriculture accounts for 8% of Iran’s GDP

June 21, 2020 - 13:21

TEHRAN - Iranian Agriculture Minister Kazem Khavazi says the agriculture sector accounts for nearly eight percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) which is about $40 billion, IRNA reported.

Speaking in a parliament open session on Sunday, Khavazi said over 4.3 million people are currently active in various fields of the mentioned sector.

Pointing to the importance of the agriculture sector in production, job creation, and environmental sustainability, the official said: "Despite the irreplaceable role of the agriculture sector in increasing economic resilience and growth in the absence of oil revenues, in recent years maximum investment in this sector has not been more than five percent.”

Elsewhere in his remarks, the minister underlined some of the important goals of the agriculture ministry in the current Iranian calendar year (started on March 20) including the improvement of food security, preservation of water, soil and genetic resources, increasing the sustainable presence of farmers in this sector and the positive balance of the country's food trade.

Khavazi put the area under cultivation of agricultural products in the country at 18.5 million hectares and said the country’s total production of such products is at about 124 million tons.

According to the official, production of wheat, as the most strategic crop, is estimated to reach 14 million tons in the current Iranian calendar year, while the target for this year has been 13.4 million tons.

He further stated that up to 1.7 million tons of sugar, 560,000 tons of oilseeds, 680,000 tons of legume, 220,000 tons of cotton, 22 million tons of forage plants, 14.3 million tons of potatoes, onions and tomatoes and 8.3 million tons of vegetables are expected to be produced this year.

The horticulture sector is expected to produce 23 million tons of products, including four million tons of apples, 5.4 million tons of citrus fruits, 3.2 million tons of grapes, three million tons of greenhouse products, 1. 2 million tons of dates and 1.6 million tons of pomegranates.

"In the horticulture sector, an increase of 4,500 hectares in the area under greenhouse cultivation (from the current level of 18,800 hectares) has been planned," Khavazi said.

EF/MA

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