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Egyptian agriculture initiative allows farmers access to services via mobile

Egypt’s Ministry of Agriculture and Land Reclamation has entered into a new Cooperation Protocol with Vodafone Egypt to provide agricultural guidance services via mobile. The initiative will also launch a call centre for Egyptian farmers.

The centre will provide specialised guidance to Egyptian farmers through the country’s Agricultural Research Centre (ARC), in cooperation with Quick Serve. As Vodafone’s principal partner, Quick Serve will be responsible for implementing the project as well as providing technical assistance throughout all phases of operation. In a media announcement, Vodafone announced the distribution of one million mobile phone lines, free of charge, to farmers across Egypt to provide them with guidance and tips on the various types of crops in order to yield the highest possible productivity per acre of land.

Dr. Ayman Farid Abou Hadid, Minister of Agriculture and Land Reclamation, confirmed that farmers will now be able to access first hand information pertaining to agricultural crops and veterinary issues from specialists employed at the ARC, at no added charge. Abou Hadid also called upon the private sector to cooperate with the Ministry of Agriculture and Land Reclamation in making contributions to all areas of agriculture, as well as to outlining various visions that may better serve the agricultural sector.

The cooperation protocol is considered a quantum leap in the life of Egyptian farmers. Through modern communication technologies, farmers will now have continuous means of communication as well as wide-scale agricultural guidance on all phases of agriculture, starting from cultivation all the way through harvesting. Moreover, farmers will also be able to inquire about the various means of irrigation and fertilisation, as well as acquaint themselves with the most favourable marketing opportunities.

Eng. Hatem Dowidar, CEO of Vodafone Egypt, expressed his contentment with this pioneering initiative, indicating that it will open up new horizons for Egyptian farmers. Through these services, farmers will have access to opportunities to improve their productivity and, accordingly, enhance the agricultural sector. Dowidar explained that agriculture is deemed one of the primary sectors that can contribute significantly to increasing Egypt’s growth rate and enhancing its economic prospects.

The vast agricultural area Egypt possesses alone, if utilised optimally, can place Egypt at the forefront of agricultural development; hence, with a view to increasing productivity, the cooperation protocol seeks to achieve the maximum possible use of the available agricultural area. Under the protocol, SIM cards will be distributed to farmers, free of charge. Each farmer will receive tips and information regarding crop cultivation.

Ms. Dalia Farouk, CEO of Quick Serve, stated that she was pleased to conclude this partnership with Vodafone, in cooperation with the Ministry of Agriculture. Farouk added that the project is expected to save farmers considerable time and effort previously exhausted in accessing required agricultural information and guidelines.

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