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Prospects for agricultural water management
Extension of irrigation land could be implemented on dry land, pastures and hayfields. This refers to about 1 200 000 ha, including 632 000 ha of land in good condition; 517 000 ha where a drainage system could be constructed; 28 000 ha requiring leaching; 1 168 000 ha needing investment; 208 000 ha where gypsum needs to be applied; 519 000 ha requiring stone collection; 1 173 000 ha requiring erosion prevention measures, 50 000 ha needing terracing. Development cost per hectare: US$2 630ľUS$26 320.
Assuming a 1 percent annual population growth rate, population will be 5 6 million in 2015 and 6 million in 2025. Feeding a larger population can be achieved by increasing the arable land area or by intensifying crop production and yield, or a combination of the above. Basic measures to increase food production are:
- increasing productivity of available agricultural land by taking the necessary steps to increase land and crop productivity;
- training agriculturists and introducing agricultural techniques: soil tillage, crop selection, crop rotation and fertilizers, and techniques for land reclamation including irrigation, drainage, leaching;
- evaluating current use of agricultural land to ensure productive use;
- preventing status change from agricultural land to industrial or other construction;
- adopting appropriate measures to develop additional land and water resources.