EU financing key agri-food project in Iran

Tehran, Iran, June 21

By A. Shirazi - Trend:

The European Union is financing a major project in Iran with the aim of promoting agri-food products in the country, a report by IRNA news agency said.

Javad Kolahan, managing director of Iran Agriculture Investment Co., on June 20 hailed a move by the EU to finance an agricultural project in Iran in a bid to promote three agri-good products, namely maize, sorghum and the EU-versions of hybrid plants as genetic models in Iran.

He said maize and sorghum as genetic models can be a major breakthrough in the country’s agricultural industry.

Sorghum is a food and feed cereal crop adapted to heat and drought and a staple for 500 million of the world's poorest people.

According the report, the European Union launched the project in May 2018 and will finance it for three years.

Iranian Agriculture Minister Mahmoud Hojjati and Phil Hogan, the European Union agriculture commissioner, held a meeting in Tehran in November 2017 during which both sides highlighted the importance of facilitating business to business contacts between the EU and Iranian agri-food companies and farm groups, with a view to develop communication channels and partnerships.

Also, a memorandum of understating (MoU) was signed between the French maize seed federation FNPSMS and Iran Agricultural Cooperative Trading Company (Betka) at the time whereby the two agreed to cooperate on improving the quantity and quality of maize, sorghum and the EU-version of hybrid plants as genetic models in Iran.

The EU has promised to cooperate with Iran on the organization of events and meetings in areas of common interest, such as the EU's sanitary and phytosanitary system, geographical indications, medicinal plants, organic farming, agriculture and rural development policy, irrigation, and to seek ways to facilitate trade in other areas of export interest to Iran, aimed at enhancing access to the EU market.

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