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Tajikistan

4

Projects Includes planned, ongoing and closed projects

US$ 91.6 million

Total Project Cost

US$ 77.31 million

Total IFAD financing

127,310

Households impacted


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The Context

Tajikistan is a landlocked country with China to the east and Afghanistan to the south. Its population is estimated to be 8.9 million (2017). The poorest country among the 15 former Soviet republics, Tajikistan’s gross national income for 2017 was at US$990 per capita.

The country’s economic base is dominated by the production of aluminium and cotton (Tajikistan’s main export commodities) supplemented by remittances from Tajik nationals working abroad. In 2017, agriculture accounted for 25 per cent of the country’s GDP, playing a significant role in the livelihoods of its rural population. Agriculture in the country comprises two broad farming systems: upland areas - characterized by wheat, potatoes and horticulture along with rainfed pasture, while irrigated cotton and wheat dominate in lowlands.

Despite its critical importance, the agricultural resource base is characterized by limited arable land and a lack of investment in infrastructure, farm machinery and agricultural equipment. Livestock is a key part of the agriculture sector. However, the ability of livestock farmers to optimize the use of pastures is constrained by many problems, such as a lack of technical knowledge among small livestock holders, poor governance arrangements on pasture management, inefficient management of community livestock, shortage of feed during winter months, environmental degradation, and lack of access to good-quality fodder seed.

Despite rapid growth in recent years, Tajikistan’s economy remains fragile due to uneven implementation of structural reforms, weak governance, widespread unemployment, seasonal power shortages and a heavy external debt burden.

Tajikistan has however done a remarkable job in reducing poverty over the years, which fell from over 83 per cent in 2000 to about 31 per cent in early 2015. While Tajikistan has seen progress in reducing poverty, the country remains in 129th place in the global ranking. Poverty is higher in rural areas, which are home to 73 per cent of the country’s poor people. It is the most vulnerable country in Central Asia with regard to food security: one-third of its population suffers from undernourishment

Because mountainous terrain compels people to congregate in its valleys, Tajikistan’s population density is about 488 people per square kilometre of arable land – one of the highest ratios of people to arable land in the world.

Unusually, Tajikistan’s rural population is increasing rather than decreasing. This reflects a higher fertility rate in the countryside and lack of employment opportunities in urban centres.

With over half the country at an altitude of 3,000 meters or more, much of Tajikistan’s geography is extremely challenging for sustainable farming.  Mountainous terrain divides the country and makes travel and transport extremely difficult, limiting internal and external trade.

The Strategy

IFAD has been investing in the rural poor in Tajikistan since 2008, by strengthening local institutions and grassroots organizations, and expanding their access to land, productive technologies and resources.

Key activities include:

  • natural resource management;
  • implementing land reforms; and
  • strengthening local institutions and grass-roots organizations.

Overall, the impact of the IFAD country portfolio has benefited rural communities through increased investment in productive infrastructure and equipment, better management of the resource base, increased viability of agricultural production, and improved animal health and productivity.

Country Facts

Tajikistan has done a remarkable job in reducing poverty. Between 2000 and early 2015, poverty fell from over 83 per cent to about 31 per cent of the population.

Tajikistan remains the poorest Central Asian country.

About 35 per cent of the population is under the age of 15.

Rural people are about 73 per cent of the total. Tajikistan relies on agriculture as its economic mainstay.


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Country documents

Country Strategy Note

Type: Country strategy note (CSN)
Region: Near East, North Africa, Europe and Central Asia

Projects and Programmes

PLANNED Under design after concept note approval

APPROVED Approved by the Executive Board or IFAD President

SIGNED Financing agreements signed

ONGOING Under implementation

CLOSED Completed/closed projects

No matching projects were found
No matching projects were found
No matching projects were found

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Related news

IFAD US$39 million investment to stimulate inclusive economic growth in Tajikistan

February 2018 - NEWS
The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Republic of Tajikistan signed a financing agreement today to reduce poverty and stimulate inclusive economic growth in poor rural communities.

UN agency to build climate resilience among pastoralists in Tajikistan

February 2016 - NEWS
Rome, 3 February 2016 – The Republic of Tajikistan and the United Nations International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) signed an agreement today

U.S. Ambassador to the UN Food and Agriculture Agencies

May 2015 - NEWS
Rome, Italy May 7, 2015 – Ambassador David Lane, the U.S. Representative to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Agencies in Rome, will travel to Tajikistan

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Related stories

Help farmers and the planet? Yes, we can

December 2019 - STORY

Tajikistan is a mountainous country nestled in Central Asia. Over five million people live a rural life, the majority of them depending on agriculture for their livelihoods.

 

Ploughing for profits

October 2017 - STORY
Gavharbi Ahmadova and Faizov Kamarali are both from the Khatlon region in Tajikistan but from different villages. Although they have never met, they have a lot in common - they both struggle to sustain their families with a steady income through farming, an almost impossible task given the near absence of agricultural machinery with which to cultivate land and harvest crops on time.  

Promoting women's development in Tajikistan

August 2016 - STORY
In partnership with the Government of Tajikistan, IFAD is creating favourable conditions for women’s development and increasing employment in mountainous areas.

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Related publications

Impact Assessment: Livestock and Pasture Development Project

December 2018
In Khatlon Oblast, the poorest region of Tajikistan, decades of overgrazing has degraded pastoral land leading to low milk and meat  production, food insecurity and malnutrition in rural areas.

Investing in rural people in Tajikistan

October 2018

IFAD has been investing in the rural poor in Tajikistan since 2008, by strengthening local institutions and grass-roots organizations, and expanding their access to land, productive technologies and resources. 

Women-led business and value chain development; a case study in Tajikistan

April 2018
Investments in smallholder goat development and related value chains are effective means to reduce poverty and increase the incomes of men and women from resource-poor households. They are also effective channels to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment in remote mountainous
areas.
 

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Related videos

Tajikistan: United We Stand

August 2018 - VIDEO
Despite recent economic growth, the Republic of Tajikistan is still one of the poorest Central Asian countries. Its rural population makes up for 3/4 of the total and relies mostly on livestock and herding as its mainstay.