Efforts of Gov’t to Enhance Agricultural Productivity Remarkable : Senior Researcher Arega Shumatie

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Addis Ababa January 11/2023/ENA/ The effort being made by the government of Ethiopia to achieve higher production by producing crops in multiple season is remarkable, Senior Researcher at Ethiopian Economics Association Arega Shumatie said.

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In an exclusive interview with ENA, Arega Shumatie said agriculture
is the mainstay of the overall economy.

Over the past few years, the agricultural
production has showed growth, even in the desert areas due to application of
technologies such as irrigation, the researcher said.

The efforts expended by the government in
using technologies and mechanization should be intensified, he said, adding
that the government should also identify the types of the crops that are
cultivated.

“Over the past three years, the government
has tried to have an active intervention on the agriculture, trying to have
multiple time production within the fiscal years. For instance, the government
had given due attention to irrigation and mechanizing production system, having
a focus on few of the crops specially wheat,” he said. 

The researcher explained that this
practice should be expanded to other crops and different parts of the country.

Despite the country’s big agricultural
potential for commercial and export products, the level of production is far below
from what is expected, the researcher said.

Ethiopia’s agriculture is dominantly
practiced by small holder farmers, who frequently use traditional production
methods and largely dependent on nature, Arega said.

Therefore, the government should provide
support to farmers to enhance productivity and free from total nature
dependence.

“The country has potential for
diversifying products because of the agro enology of the country. If there is
enhanced effort by the government, the country can produce huge amount of
surplus products that may even feed some parts of Africa,” he said.

The efforts being made by the government
to mechanize and modernize agriculture through assisting small holder farmers
utilize mechanized farming has significant contribution for increasing the
overall production.

According to him, the government should
try to identify the type of technology that could be introduced for wheat and
barley producing areas, commercial crop producing areas and irrigation
potential areas.

He added that Ethiopia needs to plan its own chemical fertilizer and other essential agricultural inputs in order to avoid dependency on other countries.

Ethiopia can learn experience from the
Asian Tigers, especially the Chinese and Korean experience, registering high
productivity from small holders farmers in fragmented and small plot of land,
the senior researcher pointed out.

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