Farmers in Turkey pressure for drought insurances

Farmers in Turkey pressure for drought insurances

IZMIR - Anadolu Agency
Farmers in Turkey pressure for drought insurances

Jittery Turkish farmers demand the government to include drought coverage into crop insurances as this year is becoming one of the driest of recent times. CİHAN Photo

Intimidated by the increasing drought risks amid the driest year in the recent past, Turkish farmers are stepping up pressure on the authorities to include drought provisions into crop insurance.

Turkish Agricultural Chambers Union (TZOB) President Şemsi Bayraktar said recent temperatures had been above seasonal averages and the lack of rain prompted agricultural drought concerns. He called on the government to help crop producers recover from the financial effects of potential problems.

In 2007, Turkey introduced subsidized agricultural insurance, known as Tarsim, regulated by the Agricultural Insurance Pool, and the scope of this insurance has been expanding ever since.

Bayraktar said the drought should be added to list of natural disasters covered, adding that the pool’s management board had already started working on the issue.

Under the Tarsim law that passed six years ago, all natural risks that could have a direct impact on the economic activities of the rural sector, such as hail, floods, earthquakes, storms, landslides and frost, were covered. Insured lands in Turkey have reached 12 billion square meters in crop production, meaning around 8.33 percent of registered lands are insured, according to figures provided by Bayraktar.