Improving water productivity in Egypt

August 31, 2011 at 6:22 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Orchard on reclaimed land in Noubaria region, Egypt: water-efficient technologies are being successfully used for field crops as well as horticulture

Egyptian government agencies will work with ICARDA and Australian partners in a renewed effort to develop, test and promote new technologies to increase water productivity in agriculture. Research priorities and action plans were developed during the ‘On-farm water use efficiency knowledge exchange workshop’ held in Cairo, 26-29 July.

The workshop, inaugurated by H.E. Salah Yousef Farag, Minister of Agriculture and Land Reclamation, brought together more than 60 R&D experts, administrators and government officials. The participants included Dr Salah Abdel-Moamen, President of Egypt’s Agricultural Research Center (ARC); H.E. Stephanie Shwabsky, the Australian Ambassador to Egypt; Dr Mahmoud Solh, ICARDA Director General; and Prof Dr Adel El-Beltagy, Chair of the International Dryland Development Commission. The workshop included a field trip to newly reclaimed land in the Noubaria region, to better understand current water management practices and farmers’ needs and perspectives on irrigation.

Future efforts will focus on three production systems: the fertile ‘old lands’ in the Nile Delta, reclaimed and salt-affected areas in the Delta, and ‘new lands’ in low-rainfall areas, where large-scale irrigation schemes are being implemented. Discussions at the workshop helped share and refine ideas for each of these systems. Potential interventions, knowledge gaps, capacity development needs and potential implementation partners have been identified for each system.

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