Qatar self-sufficient in dairy and fresh poultry products

DOHA: Minister of Municipality and Environment H E Mohammed bin Abdullah Al Rumaihi said yesterday that Qatar has achieved 100 percent self-sufficiency in dairy and fresh poultry products after unjust blockade.

“The production of dairy products increased from 60,000 tonnes a year before the blockade to about 220,000 tonnes this year, which is an increase of more than 265 percent,” said the Minister while speaking at a honouring ceremony held yesterday at the headquarters of the Ministry.

Under the patronage of Prime Minister and Interior Minister H E Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani, the Ministry of Municipality and Environment honoured the owners of agricultural, livestock and fish farms, fishermen and agricultural companies in recognition of their role in achieving major breakthroughs in production during the past period.

The Minister said that fresh poultry production increased from 10,000 tonnes per year to about 22,000 tonnes per year, showing an increase of 120 percent, while the production of shell eggs increased from 4,000 tonnes before the blockade to about 10,000 tonnes, reflecting an increase of more than 150 percent.

“The efforts to address these obstacles have caused major breakthroughs in agricultural production in the country, where the production of local vegetables increased from about 50,000 tonnes during the year before the blockade to about 65,000 tonnes after the blockade, which is an increase of 30 percent, and that the State of Qatar has achieved full self-sufficiency of dairy and fresh poultry,” said the Minister.

He said that during the period following the blockade, the Qatari agricultural sector witnessed a major development due to the active support of all sectors of the state, and Qatari agricultural producers contributed to a major breakthrough in the field of agricultural production, and all the issues and constraints faced by them under the unjust blockade were overcome.

Minister of Municipality and Environment H E Mohamed bin Abdullah Al Rumaihi said that a fiscal budget of QR105m has been allocated to provide support to agricultural producers in the country, under the state’s direction to support agricultural producers, as these funds have been channelled to support farmers, livestock breeders and fishermen.

The Minister stressed that Qatar is strongly committed to the agricultural sector as the one responsible for achieving food security in the country. He noted that Amir H H Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani’s directives were to magnify the role of Qatari farms and agricultural companies to contribute to increasing domestic production and reduce imports to enhance food security, especially under conditions of the unjust blockade imposed on the state.

He said that the Prime Minister and Interior Minister has carefully monitored the constraints and difficulties faced in increasing Qatari agricultural production, and has issued directives to overcome these constraints.

The Minister added that the registered farms in the country will be supported by protected houses and agricultural production requirements, which include seeds, fertilisers, pesticides and containers for vegetables and dates, and the distribution of honeybee cells on registered farms. He said the livestock breeders will be supported by concentrated animal feeds, supporting animal production requirements, and vaccine support for birds.

With regard to support fishermen, the Minister of Municipality and Environment explained that the sector would be given refrigerators for the storage of fish and ice, stressing that the Ministry is currently preparing list of all beneficiaries in the next few years.

He said that a specialised company in agricultural marketing has been established, which will receive production from farmers and carry out the necessary marketing operations until it reaches the consumer with high quality. The Minister assured that the company would contribute effectively to raise the marketing efficiency of Qatari agricultural products and increase the profit of Qatari farms.

At the end of the ceremony, Minister of Municipality and Environment, and the Assistant Undersecretary of Agriculture and Fisheries Affairs, Sheikh Dr Faleh bin Nasser Al Thani, handed over the certificates of appreciation to the distinguished owners of farms, breeders of livestock, fish-farms, fishermen and agricultural companies.

Source: The Peninsula Qatar