Sunday, March 24, 2024

Declining Precipitation This Year Threatens Tajikistan with Food Shortages, Rakhmon Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, Mar. 20 – The amount of snow and rain Tajikistan has received this year is 70 percent less than last, that country’s president Emomali Rakhmon says, placing it among the more than 80 countries that face problems producing enough food this year and raising the specter of food shortages and even hunger.

            Rakhmon issued that warning in his message on Navruz (, an annual holiday marking the arrival of spring and typically an occasion for upbeat statements. That makes his words about hunger especially worrisome coming as they follow similar warnings elsewhere in Central Asia (

            The Tajik president said that agricultural workers in Tajikistan must use what water they have as efficiently as possible; but if the shortfalls in precipitation are as great as he says, they face real challenges if they are to produce as much food as they have in the past. And any food shortages could both trigger more outmigration and political instability.

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