China shares water-saving agriculture experience with Arab countries

Training course on water-saving technology opens

China has opened a training class on water-saving agriculture for experts from Arab countries in Northwest China’s Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, aiming to share China’s advanced technology and experience in the region and further serve the Belt and Road initiative.

The International Training on Model Agricultural Water-saving Technology in China and Arab Countries opened on Sunday in Yinchuan, capital of Ningxia, the China News Service (CNS) reported on Monday.

The training is hosted by the College of Resources and Environmental Science under Ningxia University and the China-Arab States Technology Transfer Center.

A total of 11 agricultural scholars and technical personnel from Egypt, Yemen and Sudan are taking part in the training, which will last two weeks until July 31, Sun Zhaojun, head of the College of Resources and Environmental Science under Ningxia University, told the Global Times.

Experts from China and the Arab states discussed the water shortage issue in agricultural development in Arab countries, advanced technologies in water-saving agriculture and typical water-saving technologies, methods and projects in Northwest China, the CNS report said.

According to Sun, China and the Arab states have been cooperating on water-saving agriculture for five years. «The technologies have matured, and we are signing agreements to transfer technologies to the region,» Sun said.

The cooperation mainly focuses on aspects such as water-saving device study and development, biological resources as well as alkali soil management, with countries such as the United Arab Emirates, Oman and Egypt. «Next, China will deepen cooperation with Kuwait and Jordan,» Sun said.

«China has technologies, as well as cheaper and more advanced materials to develop water-saving agriculture,» Sun said, adding that Sino-Arab cooperation is also answering the call of the Belt and Road initiative.

According to the China News Service, a smart water-saving irrigation testing base has previously been constructed by the training project, targeting operation in scorching summer temperatures, widespread drought and water shortage common in the Persian Gulf.

Two testing bases, covering a total of 1,650 mu (110 hectares), in Muscat, Oman have implemented the water-saving technology transfer. The bases could use 20 percent less water, 60 percent less energy and increase production by 30 percent, the report said.

With a Muslim population of more than 200 million and dry climate similar to the Middle East, Ningxia plays a significant role in China’s connection with the Arab states.

Since 2015, the China-Arab States Technology Transfer Center, based in Ningxia, has initiated more than 20 Sino-Arab projects on technology and innovation that have been tested and promoted in the Arab states, such as date palm planting, halal food processing research and smart water-saving facilities.



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