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The above-average harvest continues

  • Remote Monitoring Report
  • Tajikistan
  • July 2014
The above-average harvest continues

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  • Key Messages
  • Projected Outlook Through December 2014
  • Key Messages
    • As of July 24, 545,000 metric tons (MT) cereals have been harvested in Tajikistan. The Ministry of Agriculture of Tajikistan expects 1.3 million metric tons (MMT) of cereals this year, significantly higher than last year’s already above-average production.
    • According to National Bank of Tajikistan (NBT), remittances decreased only two percent in the first six months of 2014 compared to the same period last year.
    • Most areas are able to maintain Minimal (IPC Phase 1) acute food insecurity outcomes between now and September (Figure 1) due to the above-average predicted wheat harvest for third consecutive year and its effects on the availability of staple foods in markets, labor demand, and labor wages.

    ZONE

    CURRENT ANOMALIES

    PROJECTED ANOMALIES

    National

    • Locust infestation has affected 75,000 hectares (ha) of farmland this year in Khatlon, Sughd, and the Direct Rule Districts (DRD).
    • In response to the locust infestations, the government’s locust control campaign had treated nearly all affected area with insecticides by July 8. Due to timely responses throughout the season, production losses are likely to minimal in most areas.

     


    Projected Outlook Through December 2014

    Overall, the October to June wet season performed fine, providing enough water for the development of winter and spring crops all over the country. Particularly, spring rains led to a four percent increase in planted area for spring crops compared to last year. Enough precipitation and irrigation water allowed normal area planted for cotton, similar to last year, though some area was replaced by fruit, vegetables, and fodder. Cotton developed normally, and the harvest is likely to start on time in September. Vegetation levels are near typical to somewhat better than normal (Figure 2).

    The cereal harvest started in early June, and as of July 24, 545,000 metric tons (MT) had been harvested. Cereals were planted on 291,000 ha, seven percent less than last year. However, favorable climatic conditions, especially the regularity of spring rainfall, has contributed to increased yield per hectare. Almost three MT are being produced per ha, with production estimated to reach 1.3 million metric tons (MMT). This is significantly higher than last year’s total cereal production. Wheat production is anticipated to be around 890,000 MT, very similar to last year but still above-average. However, much of the gains come from other grains such as barley. To date, the locusts in agricultural lands in Khatlon, Sughd, and DRD have been the main anomaly, but timely mitigation measures have minimized losses to locusts.

    During July mostly food prices were relatively stable compared to last month and last year, but meat and locally produced rice as prices increased slightly, probably due to high demand during Ramadan. With the start of the wheat harvest, its price started declining in all monitored markets in June. Wheat flour prices were stable, as milled local wheat has not reached markets (Figure 2). Potato prices, a secondary staple food, significantly dropped in July after the potato harvest started in the lowlands. Though potato prices are still higher than a year earlier in most markets, it is anticipated that they will decrease gradually in coming months with the arrival of the new harvest from higher elevations between now and September. Consumer prices increased 4.5 percent in the first half of the year, according to the National Bank of Tajikistan (NBT).

    According to NBT, remittances from Russia to Tajikistan declined only the slightest bit during the first six months of current year. With no sharp decline in remittances, the decrease from last year was only two percent, contrary to expectations of a reduction. However, with the Russian Federation’s economy likely continued slow pace of economic growth, Tajikistan’s trade, financial links through investment, and remittances from Russia could decrease over the coming months.

    With the start of new cereal harvest, currently rural households have sufficient access to wheat and wheat flour in most areas, while households relying on the market have stable and anticipated declining wheat and wheat flour prices. Households will have income from the period of peak labor demand for the harvest and in the construction industry. Dietary diversity will likely improve over the coming months as vegetables and fruit are harvested and their prices decrease. Income from the cotton harvest will also soon arrive in cotton-cultivating areas. However, households who rely primarily on receiving remittances might face income problems due to anticipated weaker labor demand in Russia. However, the majority of areas are likely to remain in Minimal (IPC Phase 1) between now and December.

    Figures Seasonal calendar in a typical year

    Figure 1

    Seasonal calendar in a typical year

    Source: FEWS NET

    Figure 2. July 16 to 25, 2014 eMODIS Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) anomaly from 2001 to 2010 mean

    Figure 2

    Figure 2. July 16 to 25, 2014 eMODIS Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) anomaly from 2001 to 2010 mean

    Source: U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)/FEWS NET

    Figure 2. Prices in Kurgan Tyube, October 2013 to June 2014

    Figure 3

    Figure 2. Prices in Kurgan Tyube, October 2013 to June 2014

    Source: Agency on Statistics, Tajikistan

    Figure 4

    Source:

    In remote monitoring, a coordinator typically works from a nearby regional office. Relying on partners for data, the coordinator uses scenario development to conduct analysis and produce monthly reports. As less data may be available, remote monitoring reports may have less detail than those from countries with FEWS NET offices. Learn more about our work here.

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