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  科威特

Kuwait is a dry desert country with extremely hot and dry long summers (average temp. 46.2°C) and mild winters (average temp. 6.2 °C) with scant rainfall (average of 110mm per year). Its evapo-transpiration rates (3.0-14.1 mm.d -1) exceed the annual rainfall. Kuwait’s soil is predominantly sandy with low organic matter content and poor moisture- and nutrient holding abilities. Natural water resources are minimal, presently desalinated seawater and brackish groundwater is utilized for agriculture (Table 2). Its harsh climatic conditions, vulnerable water and soil resources are the major constraints that are faced by the agriculture sector in Kuwait.

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Around 90 percent of Kuwait’s land is considered not agriculturally viable.  The agricultural areas are located in Wafra the south of Kuwait, Al-Abdali in the north of Kuwait and Al-Sulaibiya in the center. There are 2880 farms between them, with an approximate area of 141 million meter squared (Table 2). Supplemental irrigation and protected greenhouse production are heavily relied on due to the environmental and water resource constrains.

While supplemental irrigation has contributed to increase in agricultural production and greenery development in Kuwait, it adversely affected the long- term sustainability of these activities and has resulted in the degradation of land and water resources in the country. While Kuwait’s native soil is non-saline, use of saline water with total dissolved salts ranging from 3,000 to 8,000 ppm under the prevailing extreme arid environmental conditions has resulted in progressive salinization of farm lands, where application of any irrigation water would increase the amount of salts in the soil.

Family farming is not prominent in Kuwait, and the majorities of farms are not relied on for economical return or as a main source of income. The majority of the employees in the agricultural field are expatriates and have little or no background in agriculture (Table 1).

Table 1: Employment in the agriculture and Fisheries sector (International Monetary Fund, 2011).

Year

Kuwaiti

Non-Kuwaitis

2005

0.4

99.6

2006

0.6

99.4

2007

0.7

99.3

2008

0.8

99.2

2009

0.8

99.2

2010

0.9

99.1

2011

1

99

Kuwait faces a high risk of food insecurity as it is not self-sufficient and relies heavily on food imports from other countries due to its fairly low agricultural production. Food security through local agricultural is an unsustainable and an unattainable goal due to environmental and water resource constrains.

Fishing is a part of the traditional heritage of Kuwait and, apart from the industrial shrimp fishery, remains essentially artisanal in nature. The artisanal fleet lands about 90% of the finfish landings of approximately 3 700t and 45% of the shrimp landings.

The fish by-catch taken as part of shrimp trawling by both industrial and artisanal fleets is an important component of the catch and revenue from shrimp fishing, with the fish catch rate being significantly higher than the shrimp catch rate. Despite the importance of this fish by-catch, trials are being undertaken on by-catch reduction devices (BRDs) for possible introduction in to the shrimp fishery.

There are several programs and organizations that work and support the farming community in Kuwait. Organizations that works towards improving agriculture in Kuwait include; The Public Authority of Agriculture and Fisheries (PAAF), International Centre for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA), Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Sciences (KFAS), Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research (KISR), Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED), Kuwaiti Farmers Federation (KFF) and the Supreme Council for Planning and Development (SCPD).

Several of this organizations work through or with PAAF. ICARDA, PAAF and KFF act as platforms in transferring farming technologies to farmers to improve farming practices by providing training and learning workshops. Subsidies in the form of plants, water, electricity and land are given to farmers through PAFF. The Kuwaiti Farmers Federation also arranges for the marketing and sales of the products for its members.

 

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