About the work done by the Agrarian Credit and Development Agency under the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Azerbaijan during the year 2020.
Lending and management of agricultural development projects
Within the framework of the "Agricultural Competitiveness Strengthening Project" jointly implemented by the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the World Bank, preferential agricultural loans in the amount of 6735.0 thousand manats were granted to 30 sub-borrowing farms in 2020, and as a result, 392 new jobs were created.
Work on the creation of agribusiness value chains, which is one of the project's innovative activities, was continued, and a grant of 1.13 million US dollars (1.92 million manats) was given in 2020. Thus, during the reporting year, the implementation of the value chain sub-project "Production and processing of rice in Lankaran by modern methods" was completed and its official opening was held. Implementation of the value chain sub-projects "Modern production and packaging of honey in Khachmaz region" and "Processing and packaging of hazelnuts in Gabala region using modern methods" has been completed, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, official openings have not been held. The goals set in both sub-projects have been met.
As a result of the implementation of the other 15 sub-projects, 1,375 permanent and seasonal jobs have been created so far.
In the direction of "Animal health and veterinary services" within the framework of measures to combat brucellosis among large and small animals, the amount of vaccine was supplied and the vaccination campaign covering the country was continued. As a result, 4,809,617 cattle and 1,140,420 cattle were vaccinated in 2020.
Within the animal health and veterinary services sub-component of the project, organization of teaching methodology for 104 veterinarians (chief veterinarians and epidemiologists) for training assistant operators, training of 1,761 assistant operators who will provide assistance to field veterinarians, Agrarian Services Agency under the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Azerbaijan 1,624 veterinarians of field veterinary stations across the country were trained in labor protection and environmental protection.
An electronic portal www.pest-atlas.az was developed on the basis of the atlas "Pest Organisms of Quarantine Importance for the Republic of Azerbaijan", which is widely used among phytosanitary inspectors, experts of scientific research institutes, as well as scientists, and students in the field of plant health of the project. Through the portal, various search possibilities are provided for the electronic version of the atlas.
Intra-farm irrigation systems in the territory of 9 Water User Associations (SUB) in Yevlakh district during 2020 within the framework of the "Comprehensive Development of Rural Areas Project" (KIKIL) jointly implemented by the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Islamic Development Bank 109.4 km of soil, 10.9 km of new concrete lining, 53.5 km of existing concrete and trough channels were worked on, 275 different hydro-technical devices were built.
Also, in Aran settlement of Yevlakh region, a metal pipeline was built in order to improve the irrigation water supply of 4000 ha. 122.6 km of soil canals, 63.6 km of existing concrete and new concrete canals, 10.5 km of trough canals, 51.0 km of drainage canals, and 621 new hydro-technical devices were built in 8 SIB areas in Aghdash region. 169 units have been repaired.
Replacement of earthen canals with concrete canals has reduced water losses by up to 45%, as a result of the work done, the demand for irrigation water in 26,603 households of 124 villages in both regions has improved in an area of 73,293 ha.
The construction of new office buildings for 17 SIBs in Yevlakh and Aghdash regions has been completed and put into operation, equipped with appropriate office equipment and furniture.
In the areas where the project is implemented (Yevlakh, Aghdash, Oghuz, Sheki), 200 villages were mobilized and Village Action Plans (KFP) were prepared based on the identified needs, 135 social infrastructures (63 drinking water, 41 drinking water, 41 cleaning of irrigation canals, 10 drainages, 17 roads, 3 medical centers and improvement of the heating system of 1 school) were designed, of which 91 projects (40 drinking water restoration, 32 irrigation water restoration, 11 road restoration, construction of 1 medical center, 6 drainage networks improvement, improvement of the heating system of 1 school) works have been completed.
Artificial insemination services were provided to 546 cattle in 424 farms of 81 villages of the project area within the framework of KYKIL's component of increasing agricultural productivity and profitability, and 310 new calves were obtained. Veterinary services were provided in 247 farms in 46 villages.
Within the framework of the "Investment Environment and Agribusiness Competitiveness of Azerbaijan" project implemented by the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan and the International Finance Corporation (IFC), draft laws "On Seed Production" and "On Protection of Plant Varieties" were prepared. Draft laws were reviewed by KTN and sent to other institutions for opinions and proposals.
Promotion of investment in the agricultural sector - 2020 Action Plan on Agribusiness Investment Promotion has been prepared. Benchmarking (comparative analysis) was prepared for sub-sectors prioritized for the country (dates, hazelnuts, tomatoes, and pomegranates), and training on capacity building was conducted.
50 potential investors were identified from among 250 international companies in the selected areas (dates, hazelnuts, tomatoes, and pomegranates). An initial letter and presentation for sending to potential investors (on the hazelnut crop) were prepared in coordination with the IFC. Currently, the final works are being done for sending after signing.
In 2020, a total of 19 technical assistance projects were implemented in the field of agriculture with the support of international organizations and at the expense of funds allocated from the state budget, of which the implementation of the project "Strengthening the potential of agricultural information and advisory services in Central Asia" was successfully completed in 2020 and 18 the implementation of the project is continued. Within the framework of these projects, mainly animal husbandry (large and small cattle), plant growing (nut growing, healthy potato seed cultivation, protection of agro-biological diversity), improvement of the subsidy mechanism in agriculture, information and advisory services in the agricultural field, the attraction of agribusiness investments, employment of young people and women. as a result of the activities, positive contributions were made to the agricultural sector in the direction of ensuring the sustainability of the development of rural areas.
Within the framework of the joint cooperation of the Ministry of Agriculture and international organizations, projects were implemented in the following priority areas:
Strengthening of information-advisory service in the agricultural field
Increasing the employment of young people in the agricultural sector
Development of crop production
Support for pest control measures
Promotion of investments in agriculture
Law No. 1314-IVQ dated September 30, 2015 "On the establishment of the FAO Partnership and Coordination Office between the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan (ARH) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and the provision of technical assistance" and September 30, 2015 Agreements "On the FAO-Azerbaijan Partnership Program between ARH and FAO" (FATP) were approved by Law No. 1315-IVQ dated
Within the framework of the program, 7 projects are currently being implemented and 2 projects ("Support for Structural Reform and Strategic Development of the Agricultural Services Agency" and "Improvement of agrochemical laboratory and certification services in the Agricultural Services Agency") are planned.
Names of implemented projects:
"Development of cattle breeding in Azerbaijan through the creation of effective breeding and feeding systems of cattle breeding animals";
"Development of sustainable sheep farming and relevant value chain in Azerbaijan";
"Establishment of a disease-free national potato seed breeding system in Azerbaijan";
"Promotion activities and project preparation for the FAO-Azerbaijan partnership program";
"Improving food security and living conditions in rural areas by increasing women's economic power";
"Increasing agricultural employment" (AMAL Phase 1);
"Ensuring the efficiency and sustainability of the hazelnut sector in Azerbaijan - HAZER".
The project "Management of Pesticide Cycles and Pesticide Decontamination of Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) in Central Asian Countries and Turkey" implemented by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) within the framework of the FTPP aims to recover POPs from unusable pesticide stocks and contaminated sites. it strengthens the capacity to reduce leakage into the environment and to deal with pesticides properly.
"Strengthening regional cooperation and national capacities for management of wheat rust diseases and selection for disease resistance in Central Asia and the Caucasus" and "Food in the countries of the Subregional Office for Central Asia" to be implemented by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) within the framework of the FTPP reduction of wastage and waste" projects were approved according to the order of the Cabinet of Ministers dated February 11, 2021.
The project "Protection and sustainable use of globally important agro-biological diversity" by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) with the financial support of the Global Ecology Fund (GEF) aims to protect, preserve, and use the agro-biological diversity in Azerbaijan in the target regions (Sheki, Goychay, Goranboy) provides support for the cultivation and sale of local varieties, including prevention of soil erosion and degradation, increases the knowledge and skills of researchers and farmers in the field of agrobiodiversity.
The project "Increasing the Potential of the Ministry of Agriculture to Increase the Efficiency and Effectiveness of State Aid to Agriculture" implemented on the basis of the "Financing Agreement between the Republic of Azerbaijan and the European Commission on the Coherent Regional Development Program of Azerbaijan within the framework of the European Neighborhood Instrument" is part of the system of state support for agriculture and the development of rural areas. It helps to implement the government's policy of diversifying the economy, reducing regional disparities and improving living standards in rural areas by providing support to increase its effectiveness and efficiency.
The project "Development of sustainable and inclusive local agro-food systems in the northwestern region of Azerbaijan" implemented by FAO within the framework of the "Financing Agreement between the Republic of Azerbaijan and the European Commission on the Program for Regional Integrated Development of Azerbaijan within the framework of the European Neighborhood Instrument" strengthens the business environment for inclusive and efficient agriculture and food systems supported by sound agricultural advisory services.
The "Support to the development of business information system in rural areas" project implemented within the framework of the Funding Agreement for the Coherent Regional Development Program of Azerbaijan within the framework of the European Neighborhood Instrument between the Republic of Azerbaijan and the European Commission is aimed at improving the agricultural activity of farms, business efficiency and competitiveness in the regions, creating jobs and inclusiveness in rural areas. supports local authorities in providing accessible, up-to-date, reliable and relevant market data, statistics, agriculture and other information on regional life in order to enhance growth.
The Locust Disaster Risk Reduction in the Caucasus and Central Asia (CACA) project by FAO, with financial support from the United States Disaster Relief Administration, aims to predict, prevent and limit the threat posed by locusts, i.e., if the frequency and intensity of locust crises occur. By reducing potential impacts on farmland, natural pastures, human health, and the environment, QMA ensures the improvement of food security and well-being of the rural population.
The "Strengthening of agricultural advisory services (AMS)" project implemented by FAO with the financial support of the European Union on the basis of the Funding Agreement between the Republic of Azerbaijan and the European Commission on the Coherent Regional Development Program of Azerbaijan within the framework of the European Neighborhood Instrument is a better response to current and future problems in the agricultural sector and supports the government's efforts in developing a strategy and effective collaborative implementation framework for a sustainable agricultural extension service that can ultimately improve rural livelihoods.
The project "Management of natural resources and preservation of ecosystem services for the sustainable development of villages in the South Caucasus" carried out by the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ) for the sustainable and biodiversity-oriented use of natural resources in the existing land use systems in the South Caucasus with special attention to the energy security of the rural population provides improvement of initial conditions.
In the "Small Grant Projects" program of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA/YBAA), the equipment was acquired within the framework of the project "Purchase of equipment for young farmers of Ismayilly district" with a grant value of 2800 USD. In this regard, a young farmer from Ivanovka village of Ismayilly district, beneficiary of AMAL, group leader Rahib Agayev and 4 other members of that group were handed over the equipment purchased within the project supported by JICA.
22-23 of 2021 by foreign experts within the framework of the project "Strengthening of Advanced Agricultural Practices (GAP) related to Soil, Nutrients and Water for cotton production in Azerbaijan using nuclear energy and other methods" planned to be held together with the International Agency for Atomic Energy virtual training on "Climate-smart agricultural practices and the importance of 15N technology in cotton production" was held in February.
In accordance with the "Rules for the use of funds of the Agrarian Credit and Development Agency under the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Azerbaijan" approved by the Decree of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan dated December 19, 2018. No activity on the financing of sales and leasing was continued.
In 2020, preferential loans in the amount of 47,653.0 thousand manats were granted to 4,034 legal and natural persons working in the agricultural sector through authorized credit organizations for the use of the Agency's funds, including guaranteed microloans in the amount of 34,426,0 thousand manats to 3,418 legal and natural persons. Loans are mainly directed to the development of livestock, agriculture, horticulture, beekeeping and greenhouse farms.
At the same time, 37,311.2 thousand manat loans and 73,616.9 thousand manat concessions were allocated to 2,993 applications through authorized credit organizations for the purpose of financing the sale and leasing of agricultural machinery, technological equipment, irrigation system sets and equipment on preferential terms. The purchase of 7,259 pieces of equipment was financed with the allocated funds. Of those machines, 39 units are combined harvesters, 1,102 units are tractors, 159 units are irrigation systems, and 5,959 units are hanging, connected and other agricultural machinery.
136.4 thousand AZN loans and 16644.4 thousand AZN concessions were allocated to 423 applications for the purpose of financing the sale and leasing of breeding animals on preferential terms. The purchase of 8,758 breeding animals was financed with the allocated funds. Of those animals, 5,052 are cattle, 3,684 are small-horned, and 22 are ostriches.
Providing subsidies related to the production of agricultural products, as well as organizing and coordinating activities in this field
During 2020, to the crops carried out in autumn 2019 and spring 2020, to the amount of cotton, tobacco and sugar beet they produced and delivered to suppliers in 2020, to each calf purchased through artificial insemination in 2020, cocoon processing and for every kilogram of the wet cocoon (except spun and carapace cocoon) delivered to silk production enterprises, and for each bee colony they kept, a total of 277,840.2 thousand manats were subsidized at the expense of the state budget.
Thus, in 2020, 409,141 producers across the country were given planting subsidies in the amount of 232,935.93 thousand manats at the expense of the state budget for their crops and perennial plantings. 16,683 cotton producers in 23 regions were given subsidies in the amount of 28,361,54 thousand manats at the expense of the state budget for the 283,62 thousand tons of raw cotton they handed over to the cotton processors. Subsidies in the amount of 228.6 thousand manats were paid to 453 tobacco producers in 12 regions for 2.44 thousand tons of dry tobacco and 21.29 thousand tons of wet tobacco at the expense of the state budget. 169 sugar beet producers in 17 regions were given subsidies in the amount of 749.5 thousand manat at the expense of the state budget for 187.38 thousand tons of sugar beet.
In addition, 4,955 cocoon producers were given a subsidy in the amount of 2157.91 thousand manats at the expense of the state budget for the 431.58 tons of wet cocoons they handed over to cocoon processing and silk production enterprises.
In addition, 44,433 animal owners received animal subsidies in the amount of 8,389.5 thousand manats from the state budget for 83,895 calves purchased through artificial insemination, and 5,017.18 thousand manats were paid to 22,287 beekeepers for 501,718 bee families.
Payments for cotton, sugar beet, tobacco products, as well as artificial insemination will continue in January 2021.
Human resource management and training
According to the results of the interviews conducted within the measures taken to strengthen the personnel potential of the Agency, 8 people were recruited to the Agency. In order to ensure operational efficiency and eliminate deficiencies in some areas, 53 people were recruited on the basis of relevant service contracts.
5 employees were appointed to senior positions on a rotating basis.
The work of equipping the agency with healthy morale and professional personnel has always been kept in focus. During the reporting period, written warnings were given to 3 employees of the Agency, as well as 10 people working on projects implemented by the Agency, 7 employment contracts were terminated, 2 people were awarded individually in accordance with the legislation on incentive measures, and at the same time, 12 collective reward was implemented.
Adaptation of the management system to ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001:2015 international management standards for the employees working in the Agency during the reporting period, rules of ethical behavior when working with applicants, communication and explanation skills, the role and characteristics of protocol rules in civil service during operation, agricultural loans increasing knowledge on the process of reviewing and analyzing applications, improving skills on the operational organization of the bureaucracy, measures related to repeated monitoring of subsidies, educating citizens in the field of allocation of credit and microcredit products to farmers and increasing financial literacy, etc. 15 trainings (courses) were held on these topics, and about 230 employees participated in these trainings.
During 2020, volunteer activity was kept in focus in the Agency, 11 volunteers performed activities. 21 volunteers of the Ministry of Agriculture, including 8 volunteers who worked in the Agency, as well as 2 volunteers who worked in "ASAN service" centers were provided with jobs and involved in the activities of the Agency on the basis of relevant service contracts.
During 2020, 92 contracts prepared under the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Azerbaijan regarding the use of the funds of the Agrarian Credit and Development Agency and related to other issues were duly reviewed and relevant opinions were given.
In connection with the activity of the Agency, including the use of the funds of the Agency by authorized credit institutions, claims for the protection of rights in courts were prepared, participated in more than 10 court proceedings and investigative bodies, and relevant documents were prepared regarding the representation of the Agency in courts and investigative bodies.
An opinion was prepared on the drafts of decrees, orders and decisions prepared in connection with the implementation of paragraph 3.3 of the Decree No. 1137 dated August 17, 2020 of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan "On some measures related to the regulation of the activities of Agroleasing Open Joint Stock Company" and the Law of the Ministry of Agriculture submitted to the department.
An opinion on the draft law "On Amendments to the Civil Code of the Republic of Azerbaijan" and the additional draft law prepared in connection with the adoption of that draft was prepared and submitted to the Legal Department of the Ministry of Agriculture.
1 of the Decree No. 197s of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Azerbaijan dated May 12, 2020 on amending Decree No. 571 of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan dated July 23, 2015 "On Approval of the Regulations on the Agrarian Credit and Development Agency under the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Azerbaijan" The draft decision "On the improvement of the rules for the use of vehicles in the administrations, enterprises and organizations financed from the state budget in the Republic of Azerbaijan" prepared in order to ensure the implementation of part 120 of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Azerbaijan dated July 18, 2011, the project justification and a legal expert opinion was prepared and submitted to the Ministry of Agriculture for consideration.
Financial and accounting issues
Reports have been submitted to the relevant state bodies. Strengthening the overall fiscal discipline required for macroeconomic stability and sustainable economic growth, prioritizing spending directions among sectors within the multi-year resource envelope based on a sustainable fiscal framework and measuring activity based on indicators, preparing budget and extra-budgetary expenses, as well as extra-budgetary income forecasts for the next year and the next three years. It was submitted to the Ministry of Finance.
The Agency's demand for budgetary and non-budgetary funds was prepared, the cost estimate financed from the state budget was determined, as well as the cost schedules and orders for the allocation of funds in accordance with the approved annual financial plan were submitted, according to the existing contracts, the goods (works and services), employee salaries, as well as the Agency's Payment of the orders received from the state support and credit departments related to subsidies and loans, provision of material and technical and stationery supplies, goods and other necessary means for the normal operation of the structural units was carried out. Recording of fixed assets, de-registration based on the approval of the relevant executive authority, the appointment of materially responsible persons, as well as inventorying of tangible assets at the end of the year, approval of the purchase plan, implementation of purchases according to the purchase plan, and the initial purchase plan for the next year were approved. An annual monitoring plan was prepared for monitoring loans and subsidies allocated by the agency, and regular monitoring of the use of funds was carried out.