A two-day workshop on strengthening agrometeorological services concluded end of November in Khoja Obi Garm, Tajikistan. The workshop was organized by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in close collaboration with the State Agency of Hydrometeorology under the Government of the Republic of Tajikistan. The event is part of the FAO project on strengthening institutions and capacity of the Ministry of Agriculture and veterinary services, and it is funded by the European Union.
Strengthened agrometeorological services and early-warning systems are critical for farmers and rural dwellers in Tajikistan as it will increase their capacity to prepare for and adapt to changes in climate that will effect agricultural production.
The workshop was considered an important milestone in fostering public-private dialogue and it provided practical and feasible approaches to boost the efficiency and effectiveness of the agrometeorological sector. More concretely, the workshop provided a platform for participants to share views and suggestions on a way forward on strengthening the capacities at national level. It also contributed to an increased dissemination of agrometeorological services to farmers in Tajikistan.
Key national partners, including representatives from the Ministry of Agriculture, the Committee for Environment Protection, the Agency on Hydrometeorology, State Enterprise on Plant Protection and Chemicalization, Association of dehkan farms, non-governmental organizations, and farmers, as well international development cooperation agencies, including the World Meteorology Organization, participated in the event.
“Bringing agrometeorological information produced at national level the ‘last mile’ to farmers and rural dwellers, both men and women, is a priority. In order to create an effective agrometeorological programme, targeted information must reach the intended end users and eventually these users can provide feedback and support validation of early warnings” as per the FAO natural resources officer, Ana Heureux.
Interventions from civil sector, local farm associations, and leading farmers will shape the discussion on identifying what services are needed at farm-level and other gaps (access to mobile services, capacity to interpret data, and more) of Tajik farmers to utilize information. National institutions will use farmers’ recommendations and incorporate that into follow-up planning.
“Nowadays, agrometeorology deals with all the weather-sensitive elements of agricultural production and information can be identified as the cornerstone to successful farming. This workshop is important to underline the immediate needs for agrometeorological services, but also to discuss with specialists the applicable and sustainable mechanisms for sharing data,” which was emphasized by the FAO Representative in Tajikistan, Oleg Guchgeldiyev.
”Moving from piloting agrometeorological stations, providing specific information and advice on certain crops, to the creation of the nation-wide network with easy access to the data and advise available to all farmers could be the next milestone for our joint efforts.”
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