NEWS BRIEF JANUARY 2012
MAKING SENSE OF AGRICULTURAL DATA
The Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan launched a dynamic Knowledge Management Facility that will inform the decisions of farmers, agribusinesses entrepreneurs and policy makers based on the latest prices, news, and trends in Afghan agriculture.
Transforming data into insight that informs business decisions, resulting in tangible economic results.
The new Knowledge Management Facility became the central repository of agricultural data for the country. The facility collects data, studies, and information from an array of sources, transforming them into more reliable, understandable, and useful products. The facility—named “PAYWAND” after the Dari word for “connection” and the agriculture term for “grafting”—will be based within the Ministry. Among PAYWAND’s data offerings: historical price data from different commodities and markets within and outside Afghanistan, trade flows of agricultural products, and reports about agriculture markets generated by a variety of sources. PAYWAND can be accessed at http://paywand.mail.gov.af available in Dari, Pashto, and English. PAYWAND also capitalizes on data generated by several development projects and regional market information systems ensuring the sustainability of the database and, most importantly, transforming data into information products targeted to different audiences to help ensure sound agribusiness decisions. The database was established by the ministry in collaboration with the Agricultural Credit Enhancement Program (ACE) funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). ACE is a major partner of the Ministry of Agriculture, facilitating access to credit for commercial farmers and related businesses through local financial institutions and industry organizations.