The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is supporting the expansion of the Turkmen tomato producer Agromar with a loan of US $ 2.5 million to expand the company’s production facilities.
Agromar was founded in 2016 and is now one of the leading producers, packagers and marketers of fresh premium quality tomatoes in Turkmenistan. Their core product categories include medium TOVs and cherry tomatoes. Over 80% of their tomatoes are exported to Eastern European countries and the MENA region.
Agromar is an established brand in its home market as well as in Russia, Kazakhstan and the Kyrgyz Republic. The brand is owned by ES Milli Hasyl, which plans to use the EBRD loan to expand their hydroponic greenhouse. The company plans to build another 5 acres greenhouses with advanced cooling systems.
The aim is to increase the annual production capacity from 1,500 tons to 3,000 tons, with the majority of the production aimed at export markets. The Russian tomato market with an annual turnover of almost 1 billion US $ and an import share of 45 percent is an attractive opportunity for Turkmen producers.
Hydroponic greenhouses are a highly efficient technology for growing plants without using soil and with reduced water consumption. This leads to a significantly higher water use efficiency, which is achieved through lower transpiration rates of the plants in the greenhouse.
The hydroponic greenhouses allow better control over growing conditions and resource consumption by reducing water consumption by at least 75 percent. This reflects a significant improvement in water demand efficiency and agricultural productivity, which is particularly important in Turkmenistan given the country’s water scarcity.
The loan is provided by the EBRD’s Finance and Technology Transfer Center on Climate Change (FINTECC) Program for technology transfer in the field of climate protection and adaptation to climate change, financed by the Global Environment Facility (GEF). A $ 300,000 grant will support the project and demonstrate the case for advanced solutions in the agricultural sector.
Since it began operating in Turkmenistan, the EBRD has invested € 293 million in 80 projects across a wide range of sectors.