Sugar refinery to be built in Almaty Oblast24 september 2014, 01:21
A sugar factory with a capacity of 100 thousand tons per season will be built in Almaty Oblast, Tengrinews reports citing the Governor of Almaty Oblast Amandyk Batalov.
“It is planned to bring the area under sugar beet to 14,000 hectares. For example, due to restoration of Kyzylagash Dam and irrigation networks of Aksu Region is has become possible to use additional 7,600 hectares of irrigated land. But when increasing production of this important crop, we also have to take care of its processing. Therefore, we plan to build a modern sugar refinery with a capacity of 100 thousand tons per season,” Amandyk Batalov said at the briefing in Central Communication Service headquarters.
According to the Governor, 4,179 km of irrigation channels out of the total 16,557 km will be reconstructed and overhauled as part of the state-run project to restore irrigation infrastructure and reclaim farmlands. “This will increase the yield on irrigated land by 3-4 times and save 600 million cubic meters of water,” Amandyk Batalov said.
There were initially thee sugar plans in Almaty Oblast and two more in Zhambyl Oblast, all of them in Kazakhstan's south. And farmers were early planting sugar beet to supply the plants. But competition with Russia has left most of them out of business. The plants had to sell their sugar at costs below the net costs and could no longer offer farmers a decent prices for their sugar beet. So the farmers started sewing more profitable crops instead.
But all five of Kazakhstan's sugar plants were old and relied on outdated technologies that drove the prime costs up. Once the new plant with state-of-the-art equipment is completed, Kazakhstan sugar industry may once again become competitive and farmers will again be eager to plant sugar beet.
Reporting by Altynai Zhumzhumina, writing by Assel Satubaldina, editing by Tatyana Kuzmina