Azerbaijan to Significantly Increase Tobacco Production

The volume of tobacco production in Azerbaijan may increase by 30% by the end of 2018, said the Chairman of the Association of Tobacco Producers and Exporters of Azarbaijan, Telman Khasratov. "Tobacco picking started relatively recently, but we are already expecting tangible growth in production by the end of 2018. At present, the largest volumes of tobacco production are concentrated in Balakan, Sheki, Ismayilli, Gabala, Lerik and Masalli," Khasratov said.

The main directions of export of Azerbaijani tobacco, he said, are Belarus and Russia. The bulk of the tobacco produced in Azerbaijan, in turn, goes to the domestic market.

In parallel with production, it is planned to increase by the end of 2018 the export of tobacco. Speaking about the purchase price of tobacco, which is currently unprofitable for producers, Khasratov said that this issue would be resolved at a meeting scheduled for July 27 by the Azerbaijani Agriculture Ministry in Zagatala.

"At the same meeting, issues of lending to tobacco producers will be discussed. The acreage of tobacco will also increase. In Zagatala, in 2017, 600 hectares of land were used for tobacco production: in 2018 the area increased to 800 hectares," Khasratov said, adding that tobacco producers are also planning to upgrade the fleet of equipment. According to the State Customs Committee, Azerbaijan exported tobacco and its industrial substitutes to the amount of $5.52 million in January-June 2018 and imported $60.1 million. Compared to the same period in 2017, exports decreased by 9.06% and imports by about 17%.

By Dimitri Dolaberidze

30 July 2018 18:35