Kazakhstan’s President Nazarbayev on GMOs 09 сентября 2015, 15:36
On his working trip to Akmolinsk oblast to meet grain growing farmers, Kazakhstan’s President Nursultan Nazarbayev voiced his stance on GMOs, a Tengrinews.kz journalist reports.
“Brazil is on the front line of this technology (…) there’s nothing scary about growing GMOs. Many are concerned that the effect of the modified crops on the human kind has yet to be seen. However, we have to admit that the world population will not cope without genetically modified crops. There are no other ways to triple the overall agricultural produce to sustain the population of the planet. People tend to be afraid of new, unknown things. Eventually, many of new things turn out to greatly benefit the human race”, President said.
When meeting governors of Akmolinsk, Kostanai and North Kazakshtan oblasts, three major grain growing regions, President called to launch a new national research body to develop the country’s agriculture. “It’s time we got fully involved in scientific research. The current state of agriculture-related research in our country is rather gloomy (…), he believes.
“Why is the efficiency in the national agriculture is 10 times lower than that of Canada? (…) We are losing to our major competitors producing crops. I am sure the agriculture could be a further driving force for the national economy. Amidst the global crisis, iron ore, our main commodity, is no longer in high demand; however, the global demand for grain is always there (…) For this reason we will be paying a special attention to development of the national agriculture”, he said.
Earlier Tengrinews.kz reported, citing the country’s Agriculture Minister Assylzhan Mamytbekov, that for the 2013-2014 marketing year Kazakhstan had exported 8.7 million tons of grain, including grain equivalent of flour (6 million tons of grain and 1.9 million tons of flour), 22% up against the preceding marketing year.
The 2014 grain harvest in Kazakhstan was estimated at 17 million tons. In 2013 and 2012 the country harvested 18.9 and 17.7 million tons of grain respectively. In 2011 the figure made up whopping 26.9 million tons (net weight), with exports potential standing at 15 million tons.