Kingdom seeks more private sector role in boosting food production

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Arab News | 16 September 2013
“The Saudi government is encouraging its private sector to participate globally and increase food production through positioning itself as a facilitator for the Saudi private sector, seeking land and agricultural investments, and providing funds, credit, and logistics.” says Fahd Abdulrahman Balghunaim, Saudi Arabia's Minister of Agriculture

Kingdom seeks more private sector role in boosting food production

By RIYADH: ALI FAYYAZ

Fahd Abdulrahman Balghunaim, minister of agriculture, opened the 32nd international agriculture, water and agro-industry trade show at the Riyadh International Convention and Exhibition Center (RICEC) on Sunday.

Balghunaim said: “The Saudi government is encouraging its private sector to participate globally and increase food production through positioning itself as a facilitator for the Saudi private sector, seeking land and agricultural investments, and providing funds, credit, and logistics.”

He added: “The Saudi Agriculture provides the ideal business-to-business platform for exhibitors and trade visitors to capitalize on the growth of the Saudi agriculture and food market that has achieved the highest growth rates in the region and holds major potential for new businesses.”

Aimed at enhancing communication, exchange of knowledge, and business networking among corporate and government entities, the four-day exhibition underlines the importance of such events to highlight the leading position of the Saudi market, as well as to support the determined governmental efforts in this sector, in order to further stimulate regional and international investors and visitors.

Saudi Agriculture 2013 offers a wide scope of different exhibits’ profiles that include the latest in animal health and production, agricultural finance and banking, agricultural products and services, chemicals and fertilizers, cold storage and crop production, dairy farming products and equipment, fisheries and fish farming, greenhouses, handling and transport systems, irrigation and landscaping equipment, machinery and spare parts, organic farming, packaging systems and products, pesticides, pumps and pipe systems, seeds and soil nutrition products, spraying machinery, water treatment, water management systems, and warehousing.

Saudi Agriculture is being held concurrently with Saudi Agro-Food and Saudi Food-Pack to feature the latest products, technologies and services in areas ranging from frozen and chilled foods, confectionery, chocolates, health and natural foods, to presentation, processing and packaging equipment.

The Agro-Food sector in the Kingdom is witnessing a steady growth rate, due in part to the rapidly increasing population. The Kingdom’s recent food and beverages market is worth 16 billion.

More than $400 million has been earmarked for the establishment of Saudi Organic Farming Association providing support to organic farmers.

The Kingdom’s domestic organic and natural foods sector is currently valued at around $27 billion, accounting for 90 percent of the regional GCC market.

International Agriculture Trade show is certified by the UFI — the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry — in recognition of its world-class activities prepared and managed under international standards.

Saudi Agriculture is one of the region’s most important exhibitions in the field of agriculture products and technologies, addressing every aspects of the industry through the dissemination of the latest on-farm and off-farm technologies and modern practices, which cover pre and post-harvest activities, marketing and imports.

The premier agriculture exhibition in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East gathered over 300 local and international exhibitors from more than 13 countries, including China, Egypt, Germany, Hungary, India, Italy, Malaysia, Pakistan, Taiwan, Turkey, the UAE and the United States, aside from Saudi Arabia.

The exhibition attracts hundreds of business visitors including professionals, decision makers, experts, farmers, agriculture associations and investors from government and private organizations.

It is a unique platform to expand existing exports or establish new ones, at the center of the region's fastest growing market.
Original source: Arab News
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