Agriculture suffers Syria’s crisis aftermath
Antoine Howayek seeks insurance against natural disasters
June 27, 2011- The agricultural sector is affected by various risks ranging from natural disasters to the abrupt import of goods as well as the underdeveloped infrastructure. Head of the Farmers’ Syndicate Antoine Howayek talked to Al Akhbar about the situation of the agricultural sector in light of current challenges.
Howayek said the uproar in Syria has contributed to the suffering of the sector, along with the scarcity of low-priced workforce. The absence of Syrian workers has affected the production cost, imposing a rise in prices of agricultural goods.
According to Howayek, a bill, prepared in 2005, for the establishment of an institution for securing agricultural products against disasters has not yet made it to the parliament.
Howayek said subsidy programs on exports declined by 20 percent since 2005, while at the same time agricultural exports rose gradually from 480,000 tons in 2007 to 540,000 in 2010. However, he said, the rise in exports was unbalanced and was caused by only two commodities, apples and bananas, while other exports of other commodities either dropped or remained unchanged.
Date Posted: Jun 27, 2011