In a decisive move to boost wheat production, Dr. Omar Mohamed Marzouk, Governor of Al Jazeera Project, has instructed rapid distribution of wheat production inputs. These inputs, valued at 75 billion pounds, are set to cultivate 300,000 feddans of wheat, including 12,000 feddans for seed production. The funding for these inputs is provided by the Agricultural Bank.
Facing Financing Challenges
The governor recognized the challenges encountered in financing for the summer season. In response, he has discussed collaborative efforts with the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Forests and the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning. They aim to secure financing by mortgaging the project's assets, which are estimated at a whopping 102 billion pounds. The power to manage these finances has been transferred to the current governor.
Pricing and Collaboration
The governor revealed the pricing for the inputs - 51,000 pounds for a 60 kg bag of seeds, 45,000 pounds for a bag of manure, and urea at 38,000 pounds per bag. He applauded the High Committee's efforts in ensuring the project's winter season's success. He also highlighted coordination with the Ministry of Irrigation and Water Resources for irrigation and the provision of 10,000 gallons of diesel for canal cleaning and maintenance.
Unified Body for Farmers
In addition to these developments, Dr. Marzouk expressed support for the formation of a unified body for Al Jazeera and Al Managil farmers. This body would strengthen management efforts and coordinate financing with production partners.
Progression Towards Wheat Planting
Ibrahim Mustafa, Director of Agricultural Management at the project, announced the cultivation of 65,492 feddans of wheat. This initiative is facilitated by a grant from the World Food Programme and covers 30% of the targeted area for the winter season. Additionally, 20,000 feddans are being funded independently. According to Mustafa, 80% of the preparatory operations for wheat planting have been completed, and he expects full planting by December 21.
Securing Food Over Profit
Despite high production yields for soybeans and maize, the emphasis is on wheat cultivation. The aim is to secure food without profit motives, even if it means the project's assets are confiscated. Dr. Fadl Al Mawla Ibrahim, the financial management director, stated that funding covers seeds, fertilizers, and pesticides. He also clarified that the project receives no financial support from the Federal Ministry of Finance.