Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Dr. Bekir Pakdemirli attended the Second Stage LEADER Measure Local Action Groups Launching Meeting which will be implemented in 15 provinces within the scope of IPARD.
Claiming that great success has been achieved in every area ranging from agriculture to health, from economy to technology thanks to Turkey’s vision of development in the last 19 years, Minister Pakdemirli stated that the biggest achievement took place in the area of agriculture and rural development, and that agriculture and rural development lie at the basis of economic development.
Expressing that rural areas continue to be of vital importance for countries to be self-sufficient in agricultural production and development in general, Pakdemirli stated that, in this regard, any investment in the field of rural development will accelerate the development of countries. “Turkey owes its development to rural development,” said Pakdemirli and added: “We know that rural development means the development of the agri-food sector. The development of the agri-food sector also means the development of the economy, and thus of the country. Therefore, there is ‘rural’ at the heart of our common meeting point in our Ministry where agriculture, food, water and forests are located. “ Minister Pakdemirli emphasized that the Ministry has developed many national programs for the efficiency and sustainability of rural development and that they have carried out numerous successful projects in cooperation with international programs, especially IPARD.
“WE CREATED 350 THOUSAND NEW EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES IN RURAL AREAS WITH OUR SUPPORT”
Stating that approximately 25 percent of the country’s population lives in the countryside, Pakdemirli added that they have implemented numerous support and incentive programs that increase production in rural areas, provide added value and aim to increase employment. “Within this scope, we have paid a grant support of 27 Billion Lira in real figures to a total of 480 thousand projects, including grants of Young Farmer, Expert Hands in Rural Development, ORKÖY (General Directorate of Forestry and Village Relations) and IPARD. Thanks to these supports, an investment of approximately 50 Billion Lira was made in real terms in rural areas and 350 thousand new employment opportunities were created. We extended the duration of economic investments until 2025. As of March 1, we started accepting projects with 50% grant support for modern irrigation systems. IPARD rural development supports and ORKÖY loans also continue. We extended the application deadlines of our 10th call announcement for IPARD-II until April 2 for the livestock investment and until April 9 for the food processing measure. Until 2022 we will have provided 50% to 100% grants for buffalo, sheep and goat breeding investments, breeding ram and male goat purchase, goose and turkey breeding, sericulture and beekeeping investments, depending on the subject. We aim to spread the Expert Hands in Rural Development project throughout the country.
“ “GEOGRAPHICAL MARKERS OF 688 PRODUCTS HAVE BEEN REGISTERED IN TURKEY”
Minister Pakdemirli said that they have increased the number of Agricultural Specialized Organized Industrial Zone Projects from 23 to 48, which makes a significant contribution to rural development. Stating that they attach great importance to branding and geographically marked products in rural development, Pakdemirli further added: “Geographical markers of 688 products have been registered in Turkey in the last 19 years. Currently, 701 of our products are in the registration phase.
” “DITAP WILL TAKE AGRICULTURE OF TURKEY TO A MUCH MORE ADVANCED LEVEL”
Expressing that there are about 200 thousand buyers and sellers registered in the digital agriculture market (DITAP) where producers and consumers meet and a volume of 170 Million Lira-worth of transactions has been reached, Pakdemirli said that DITAP will take Turkey’s agriculture to a much more advanced level in the future of the digitalized world and will provide greater opportunities and bigger markets. Stating that the National Rural Development Network established within the Ministry is important and that they aim to make the rural population aware of their savings and resources so as to mobilize them, Pakdemirli said: “With this network, we have implemented our project to develop common application models for small businesses and farmers.
” “A TOTAL BUDGET OF 24.4 MILLION EURO WAS ALLOCATED TO THE LEADER APPROACH”Minister Pakdemirli stated that a total of 24 Million 400 Thousand Euro was allocated to the LEADER Approach, which was developed to encourage local stakeholders to prepare and implement sustainable development strategies for rural areas in their regions. Stating that they aim to increase production capacity and employment, increase the quality of life in rural areas and keep the rural population in rural areas within the scope of the LEADER measure, Pakdemirli added the following words: “Thanks to the LEADER measure, the local needs are met by local governments and all parties are encouraged to participate. In 15 provinces of the second phase of the project which include Balıkesir, Burdur, Bursa, Çankırı, Elazığ, Erzincan, Giresun, Hatay, Isparta, Karaman, Kütahya, Mardin, Muş, Uşak and Yozgat, our experts continue their field studies with local representatives in order to enhance awareness raising, augment capacity building and prepare Local Development Strategies for Local Action Groups. As has taken place in 12 provinces earlier, we aim and manage to establish new Local Action Groups in 15 provinces, to prepare Local Development Strategies, to make our women and youth more active in rural areas and to direct the entrepreneurial spirit and rural dynamics to sustainable production by encouraging them to take part in rural development. “ Minister Pakdemirli also added that LEADER measures will support Turkey’s development and enhancement under the current pandemic conditions and will provide significant added value with the mobilization of the countryside through the production of projects with collaborative action.