Kazakhstan to gradually nullify its imports of fertilizers from Russia

Special correspondent of the "News" department
The country is going to produce them on its own

Kazakhstan must produce phosphate and potassium fertilizers on its own. The country needs to decrease the amount of these products exported from some foreign countries, including Russia, according to President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev.

The president noted that local farmers have been trying to use fewer fertilizers than needed for years.

«These fertilizers are costly. Kazakhstan’s market desperately depends on imports and just a few local producers. Moreover, we’ve learned that some suppliers have ripped off our farmers. For example, a company called Kazphosphate used to sell a huge amount of fertilizers to affiliated company Kazchemical Trading House, which later charged clients 30% higher prices than it was supposed to. We need to fix this situation with the help of antimonopoly legislation,» Tokayev said.

He also urged law enforcement agencies to pay much more attention to such situations.

According to the president, Kazakhstan imports more than 600,000 tons of mineral fertilizers annually. About 80% of them are brought from Russia.

«The government has to take a set of measures to prevent the scenario of fertilizers running out or their price going up. There are several potassium and phosphate fields in Kazakhstan. We must explore and launch the full-scale production of these fertilizers domestically. There are no ways to avoid dependence on foreign fertilizers other than that,» Tokayev stated.

As a result, he has ordered the government to keep an eye on the issue.

Tokayev has also pointed at a deficit of domestic seeds – the country imports about 49% of them. In some cases, for example in terms of potato and sugar beet, this rate is about 90%.

«We are dependent on imported seeds. The government must take actions to develop seed farming, acquire new equipment and put additional incentives for the agricultural science in our country,» the president added.

In May, Kazakhstan banned the export of sunflower oil seeds. The ban is going to last until September 30, 2022.

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