The Government of the Netherlands aspires to increase its support for the stabilisation of Iraq and Kurdistan Region of Iraq to empower people to build a new future. An economy, which creates new employment opportunities and makes smart use of resources may contribute to such a new Iraq. Though Iraq is an oil-rich middle-income country, it is one of the most fragile countries in the world. The agriculture and food sector is a vital sector in Iraqs economy. Today, agriculture is the most important source of rural employment. The backbone of the agriculture and food sector are small-scale farmers.
A recent study by Jongerden et al. (2018) considers the low agricultural productivity as one of the main problems of agriculture. In addition farmers mostly sow seeds directly in to the field, due to a lack of good starting material. Farmers make use of direct sowing or have a lack of quality propagation nurseries, whilst a healthy seedling is the best start of the crop. The study also identified the horticulture subsector as a very promising sector since a lot of activity is going on in this region and the sector shows potential in terms of improvement of output to increase competiveness compared to neighbouring countries.
The project aims to assess the feasibility of a vegetable propagation facility in Kurdistan that makes available to farmers improved starting material.