BAKU, 7 May 2019 – Food and Agriculture Organization of United Nations and the State Agro Trade Company under the Ministry of Agriculture launched an Agro Action of Azerbaijani Women project called AFAQ. The project aims to improve food security, socially inclusive rural development and sustainable livelihoods through rural women’s empowerment.
The presentation ceremony brought together representatives of FAO Office in Azerbaijan, Ministry of Agriculture, the State Committee for Family, Women and Children Affairs, experts from public and private sector, international organisations, female farmers and entrepreneurs.
In Azerbaijan, women account for more than 20% of the official employment statistics in agriculture, forestry and fisheries. However, they face a number of challenges such as gender pay gap; informality of jobs; triple work burden and poor access to social services. Women’s access to productive resources, financial assets and lack of marketing opportunities prevent them from engaging in successful business strategies.
Through the project, technical support will be provided to strengthen gender-sensitive rural advisory services; to support women’s self-organisation and access to information networks; and to enhance visibility of women and girls’ roles in agriculture and rural livelihoods to achieve social and behavioural change.
Women entrepreneurs will be supported through improved access to markets and credits, and capacity building activities on business creation, expansion and development.
AFAQ project is implemented within the framework of FAO Azerbaijan Partnership Programme.