Valley Irrigation, a Valmont company, this week announce that it has signed an agreement with the Republic of Kazakhstan and private holding company Kusto Group to collaborate on a project that will ensure efficient use of water resources, share advanced technologies with local farmers, and maximize yields for the country’s agricultural sector.
The document outlines a roadmap toward the construction of a plant in Kazakhstan for the manufacture of Valley pivots, with an annual production capacity of 1,000 linear and pivot irrigation machines. The parties involved express interest in implementing some aspects of the project in the Astana International Financial Centre in Nur-Sultan, the capital of Kazakhstan.
Kazakhstan is the ninth-largest country in the world by land mass – the world’s largest landlocked country – with a population of 18 million. An independent nation since 1991, Kazakhstan possesses large oil and mineral resources, and seeks to tap into its huge agricultural potential. Agriculture is among the priority sectors for Kazakhstan, where 75 percent of its territory is suitable for the industry and 15 percent of the population is employed in the field.
“Kazakhstan has tremendous potential to be an agricultural leader in Central Asia,” said Josh Dixon, Vice President & General Manager, International Irrigation for Valley. “The government of Kazakhstan is looking to Valley to help them institute best practices for farming that are sustainable and that produce higher and better yields while using fewer resources.”
It is estimated Valley technologies will increase crop productivity and reduce agricultural costs in Kazakhstan by 50%.
While in Omaha, Prime Minister Askar Mamin met with Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts, Valmont Industries CEO Stephen Kaniewski, and the Chairman of the Board of Kusto Group, Yerkin Tatishev. Prime Minister Mamin also toured the Valley, NE, facilities of Valmont Industries and saw the market-leading production capacities and technological processes of Valley firsthand.
“We are excited to welcome Valmont to Kazakhstan and work together with the global leader in mechanized irrigation. The use of advanced technologies by Valley will have a ‘multiplier effect’ on crop production, yield enhancement and the creation of a sustainable forage base for livestock. Together, we will make Kazakhstan an agricultural leader,” said Mamin.
The Prime Minister noted that Kazakhstan plans to increase the area of irrigated land from 1.4 million hectares to 2 million by 2022, and to 3 million hectares (7.4 million acres) by 2030.
“The agreement signed today creates a world-class platform that will enable Kazakhstan to unlock its enormous agricultural potential. Valley brings more than 70 years of experience and know-how that will help our farmers and growers create sustainable incomes, build new jobs and fulfill the goal of helping Kazakhstan become a global food provider to the world,” stated Kusto Chairman Yerkin Tatishev.
The agreement will create a network of farms designed to demonstrate advanced irrigation technologies and train local farmers in responsible water management. Valley solutions, manufactured in Kazakhstan will serve the domestic market and act as a hub for exports to the region.
The first step in this new partnership began in August with the opening of a Valley training facility and demonstration farm at the Barayev Scientific and Industrial Centre for Grain Farming. Located approximately 60 kilometers from the capital, the Barayev institute is strategically situated in one of the country’s oldest agricultural centers.
“It is a tremendous honor to help lead the development of sustainable agriculture in Kazakhstan,” Dixon said. “In tandem with the Kazakh government and our partner Kusto Group, we will transform the country and the region.”