Kazakhstan Advances Agricultural Progress in 2023 in Pursuit of Eurasian Leadership

ASTANA — Summing up the country’s achievements in the agricultural sector in the outgoing year, the Prime Minister’s press service released an overview of the industry’s results on Dec. 25.

In the Abai Region, the irrigation systems have been successfully finalized, covering an expanse of 1,543 hectares. This project’s overall investment reached 1.5 billion tenge ($3.2 million). Photo credit: Prime Minister’s press service

President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, addressing the nation this September, emphasized the enormous potential of the domestic agricultural industry and the need for Kazakhstan to become a leading agricultural center in the Eurasian continent. The key focus is transitioning from primary production to higher value-added products to increase the share of processed products in the agro-industrial complex to 70% within the next three years. 

To achieve these ambitious targets, the government of Kazakhstan has rolled out a series of innovative programs designed to foster a qualitative breakthrough in the agricultural sector. According to the results for 2023, Kazakhstan showcased the substantial progress made in various aspects of the agricultural industry.

Gross Agricultural Output

For the first 11 months of the year, the volume of gross agricultural output reached an impressive 8.2 trillion tenge ($17.8 billion). Notable harvests include 16.6 million tons of grains, 2.1 million tons of oilseeds, and 5 million tons of forage crops, ensuring ample supply for the domestic market.

In the Turkistan Region, the incorporation of cutting-edge technologies resulted in a remarkable fivefold surge in productivity, escalating from 60-70 quintals to an impressive 300-350. Photo credit: Prime Minister’s press service

Investments and Innovative Projects

Government support has led to a surge in investment in the agricultural industry. In 2023, 207 investment projects worth 164.5 billion tenge ($358 million) have been launched, further strengthening the sector. 

The North Kazakhstan Region’s state-of-the-art 4th generation greenhouse incurred a cost of 7.2 billion tenge ($15.6 million). Photo credit: Prime Minister’s press service

Several innovative projects have been realized, including the production of powdered mare’s milk, legume processing, and a gluten-free oat flakes factory, showcasing the diversity of Kazakhstan’s agricultural ventures. 

In the Kostanai Region, a facility for producing powdered mare’s milk was worth 10 billion tenge ($21.7 million) in overall investments. In the same region, the Turkish company Arbel Bakliyat has executed a comprehensive legume processing project, with initial investments for the first stage reaching 4 billion tenge ($8.7 million), with subsequent increments expected to surge to 9.4 billion tenge ($20.4 million).

The North Kazakhstan Region is now home to a state-of-the-art 4th generation greenhouse designed to yield nearly 3,000 tons of tomatoes, cucumbers, and lettuce annually. The project incurred a cost of 7.2 billion tenge ($15.6 million).

Collaborating with the Swiss concern Buhler, the Akmola Region has implemented a gluten-free oat flake production project valued at over 2.5 billion tenge ($5.4 million). This cutting-edge facility operates at a capacity of 2 tons per hour and encompasses designated areas for receiving, drying, cleaning, and storing raw materials.

In the Pavlodar Region, a vegetable storage facility capable of holding 10,000 tons of produce has been inaugurated, with the project’s estimated cost reaching 1.8 billion tenge  ($4 million).

Livestock Industry Growth and Food Production Increase

The livestock industry demonstrated stable growth, with production volumes increasing by 3.3%, totaling 3.8 trillion tenge ($8.2 billion). The volume of food production witnessed a 1.9% increase, reaching 2.9 trillion tenge ($6.3 billion).

Regional Agricultural Development

Efforts to replicate successful industrial projects, particularly in the North Kazakhstan Region, have been initiated. An allocation of 100 billion tenge ($217.5 million) is earmarked to construct 65 commercial dairy farms, aiming to increase milk production by at least 373,000 tons. 

The implementation of the program, directed at increasing the income of the rural population through agricultural cooperation, has commenced with an allocation of 100 billion tenge ($217.5 million). This initiative aims to issue 17,000 microloans, generating around 18,000 new jobs.

A proactive approach to reclaiming unused and illegally issued agricultural lands has also been successful. In 2023 alone, 4.6 million hectares were returned to the state, bringing the total to 10 million hectares since the beginning of 2022. These lands are prioritized for farmers to address the shortage of pastures.

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