A delegation of the Republic of Uzbekistan visited Latvia on October 7-11, 2019 to explore the Latvian experience in implementing the GLOBALG.A.P. international standard (a set of practices that address environmental, economic and social sustainability for on-farm processes, and result in safe, high-quality food and non-food agricultural products), and organization of supply and marketing chains of agroproduce in the European Union countries.
The study tour was organized in the framework of the UNDP “Aid for Trade” project in Uzbekistan jointly with the Secretariat of the GLOBALG.A.P. international standard. The delegation comprised of 8 public and private sector representatives inckuding the Ministry of Investments and Foreign Trade, Export Promotion Agency, Uzstandart Agency, Tashkent State Agrarian University, leading agro-companies and exporters of agro produce of Uzbekistan.
The main purpose of the visit was to learn experience of Latvian public authorities and private companies on development of the agriculture industry and implementation of advanced requirements of the Good Agricultural Practice standard, get familiarized with practical implementation of the basic principles of the GLOBALG.AP standard and requirements on sustainable use of land, water and biological resources, learn the main marketing channels for fruits and vegetables in the market of Latvia and other European Union countries, and discuss issues related to the development of the market of fruit and vegetable products in general.
Members of the Uzbek delegation visited the Latvian Rural Advisory and Training Centre, Food and Veterinary Service of Latvia, Department of Border Control, University of Natural Sciences and Technology, Institute of Food Safety and Environmental Protection, GLOBALG.AP certified farms, main logistics and distribution centers for importers of agroproduce, and held negotiations with the leading retail chains “Rimi” and “Maxima”, which manage over 800 stores in the Baltic countries.
“During the five-day study tour, we were able to familiarize ourselves with the main phases of agricultural development in Latvia, improvements and progress made by the country in certification and standardization systems in the agricultural sector, introduction of new technologies and innovations aimed at improving quality of agroproduce and creating sustainable agricultural production. In addition, we were able to get clear understanding on further ways of development and implementation of the national standard on Good Agricultural Practice (“UzG.AP”) in Uzbekistan, which is currently under elaboration jointly with the ministries, departments and the GLOBALG.AP Secretariat” said Askarali Askarov, head of the department at "Uzstandart" Agency.
“One of the main points for me was to study Latvia’s experience in development of a streamlined mechanism for close cooperation between science and business, where new products are developed for further production within the framework of joint projects, and the students improve their knowledge and capacities directly working on technological processes,” said Aktam Azizov, associate professor at Tashkent State Agrarian University.
“Study tour to Latvia gave an opportunity to establish close ties with leading importers of fruit and vegetable products, discuss the terms, requirements and procedures for importing of agricultural products to the EU markets” said Hikmatulla Parmonov, head of department at the Ministry of Investments and Foreign Trade of Uzbekistan.
As follow-up to the study tour, the members of the Uzbek delegation have agreed on elaboration of recommendations and proposals on the reforms needed in the agricultural sector of Uzbekistan based on the experience of Latvia, for further inclusion in the draft of the National Agriculture Development Strategy for 2020-2030.
The UNDP trade development activities are carried out in accordance with the Action Strategy for Uzbekistan Development 2017-2021, with focus on achieving the Sustainable Development Goals adopted by the UN Member States.
UNDP’s ‘Aid for Trade’ project as a national component of the regional ‘Aid for Trade in Central Asia – Phase III’ project aims at increasing income generation, creating jobs and expanding exports.