EghtesadOnline: The 11th Conference on Iranian Agricultural Economics opened in Karaj, Alborz Province, on Tuesday at the College of Agriculture & Natural Resources affiliated to the University of Tehran.
The two-day biennial scientific event hosts experts on agriculture economics, researchers, related organizations and authorities at universities with agricultural economics departments, IRNA reported.
According to Habibollah Salami, the head of Iranian Agricultural Economics Society, the conference features presentation of scientific articles by professors, researchers and graduate and PhD students, in addition to specialized roundtables and panels discussing topics such as climate change, sustainable agriculture and novel instruments to finance agricultural projects.
Special Presidential Aide for Economic Affairs Masoud Nili voiced grave concern at the conference over the deteriorating water crisis in Iran by stating that water shortage has become more evident since the last Iranian year (ended March 20, 2018), according to Financial Tribune.
“If we don’t devise proper policies, people may choose to solve the issue with regional conflicts,” he said.
Water and soil affairs deputy with the Ministry of Agriculture, Ali Morad Akbari, said the drought currently facing Iran is unprecedented in the past 70 years.
Agricultural economics is an applied field concerned with the application of economic theory in optimizing the production and distribution of food and fiber. It is a branch of economics specifically dealing with land usage. It focused on maximizing crop yield while maintaining a good soil ecosystem.
The discipline influences food, agricultural and environmental policies.
The agricultural sector has a noticeable share in the Iranian economy. Iran’s agricultural and food exports amounted to around 6.13 million tons worth $5.93 billion in the last Iranian year (March 2017-18), registering a 5% and 4% growth in weight and value respectively compared with the previous year.
As Kaveh Zargaran, the head of Agricultural Commission with Tehran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture, told IRNA earlier, agro exports account for around 13% of the value of the country’s total non-oil exports over the period.
Iran’s total agricultural trade stood at around $15.73 billion last year, registering a deficit of $3.87 billion.
According to the Central Bank of Iran's latest report, the agriculture sector grew by 4.1% during the first three quarters of the last fiscal year (March 21-Dec. 21, 2017) compared with the previous year's corresponding period.
The Statistical Center of Iran put agricultural production growth for the same period at 1%.