Qatar, represented by the Ministry of Municipality and the Environment (MME), has seen the significant development in agricultural production towards food security as self-sufficiency in local vegetables hit 24 percent, dates about 87 percent and green fodder about 50 percent, according to recent statistics.
In his speech on the occasion of the World Food Day on Monday, Minister of Municipalities and Environment HE Mohammed bin Abdullah al Rumaihi said Qatar has keen interest in developing resources and wealth, especially in agriculture, towards achieving self-sufficiency in many commodities and products, pointing out that Qatar has harnessed all its energies to work towards building food security.
The total area of protected greenhouses increased from 49 hectares in 2007 to 73 hectares in 2018. Thus, the quantities of vegetables produced increased from 4,814 tonnes last year to 6,500 tonnes this year. The area of unregulated greenhouses increased from 200 hectares in 2017 to 220 this year, leading to an increase in production from 17,000 to 20,000 tonnes, while the production of vegetables in open land increased from 33,000 tonnes in 2017 to 36,000 tonnes in 2018.
According to the latest statistics, this year's dairy products reached more than 500 tonnes per day, covering 83 percent of domestic consumption, compared to 154 tonnes a day in 2017, with a self-sufficiency rate of 24 percent.
For fresh poultry, production before the blockade reached 30 tonnes per day with a self-sufficiency of 50 percent, while currently it reached more than 59 tonnes, covering 98 percent of the domestic consumption.
For fish production, the current self-sufficiency rate is 80 percent and is expected to reach 90 percent within two years, with plans to increase production as well as aquaculture projects, including floating cages projects.
Assistant Undersecretary for Agriculture and Fisheries Affairs at the Ministry of Municipality and Environment Sheikh Dr Faleh bin Nasser al Thani told QNA that there are plans to increase production in the agricultural sectors and food commodities, thus increasing self-sufficiency within the strategy of the ministry.
He pointed to several initiatives undertaken by the State represented by the ministry to increase food security by providing opportunities for private investors in the agricultural field with four strategic projects of vegetables production, with an area of one million square metres per project, as well as an investment project for shrimp farming with an annual capacity of 1,000 tonnes, floating fish with a production of 2,000 tonnes of fish per year and other marketing programmes for Qatari vegetables in consumer complexes.