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Problems with agricultural technology

By Messenger Staff
Tuesday, August 2
Analysts in Georgia's agricultural sector state that one of the major problems is the chronic lack of equipment. The Ministry of Agriculture declared that over the last seven years 1630 agricultural machines have been imported into Georgia but many need repair or they are not available in all areas. One average-sized village requires at least three tractors and, since there are approximately 3670 villages in Georgia outside of conflict zones, at least 10-11,000 tractors are needed. Formerly President Saakashvili promoted Belarussian tractors, promising to import 1000 more, as they consume less fuel than other types. Farmers say that the shortage of equipment has meant that only 1/3 of the agricultural lands are cultivated. During the Soviet era more than 800,000 hectares were cultivated in Georgia, compared to only 300,000 hectares today. Georgian leadership has promised yet again that agriculture will become a priority.