RIYADH: Several initiatives are underway in Saudi Arabia by the Ministry of Environment, Water, and Agriculture to drive the growth of the agricultural sector and bolster its contribution to the gross domestic product through strategic training and investment incentives.
Among these efforts are projects aimed at localizing agricultural professions through comprehensive training programs. The focus is on qualifying professionals in various fields, ranging from fishing trades to livestock management, beekeeping, and honey production.
Additional government support is being extended through a series of legislative decisions, with the objective of enforcing high-quality standards for Saudi products. This is achieved by issuing food quality certificates and expediting the procedures for obtaining agricultural licenses.
The support also encompasses the provision of subsidies and the allocation of soft agricultural loans through the Agricultural Development Fund, the Saudi Press Agency reported.
The ministry has introduced distinct labels for agricultural products, fish, and livestock in the Kingdom. These labels include “Organic,” “Fish,” “Saudi Dates,” and “Saudi Qab” certification.
This allows farmers and investors to market and export their products, thereby expanding opportunities in both local and global markets. Simultaneously, it provides a dependable means to ensure quality and safety standards.
This came during a workshop organized by the ministry, aligning with the Vision 2030 objectives for food security and sustainable agricultural development. The workshop was conducted under the title “Future Prospects for Investment in the Agriculture and Aquaculture Sector.”
The workshop took place with the attendance of various private sector companies, investors, and experts in the agriculture and aquaculture sectors within the Kingdom, as reported by the SPA.
Participants in the workshop expressed their consensus that the ministry is actively working toward implementing numerous initiatives and programs.
These initiatives aim to foster and implement sound agricultural practices, advance applied agricultural research, and fortify frameworks for the sustainable development of food consumption.
Moreover, the ministry reiterated its commitment to establishing the previously announced Regional Center for Sustainable Development of Marine Fisheries, demonstrating its dedication to supporting the aquaculture industry.
The measures implemented by the ministry resulted in a substantial boost to the agricultural sector’s contribution to the GDP, reaching approximately SR100 billion ($27 billion) in 2022.
Concurrently, total food production surged to around 11 million tons, contributing significantly to price stability and elevating self-sufficiency rates for essential goods and products in the Kingdom.