Opportunities and Challenges of Small-Scale Irrigation And Its Implications For Livelihood Improvement: (The Case Of Tigray Regional State, Northern Ethiopia)

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Gebrehiwot, Nahusenay Teamer ; Rao, Dr. P.Madhu Sudana (2015)
  • Publisher: Journal Of Business Management & Social Sciences Research
  • Journal: Journal Of Business Management & Social Sciences Research (issn: 2319-5614)
  • Subject: Social Sciences; Economics | small scale irrigation, positive contribution to agriculture development and livelihood

The paper examines the challenges and opportunities of small-scale irrigation schemes in northern Ethiopia, with the view of strengthening their significance in improving rural livelihoods in Tigray region. It adopts quantitative and qualitative research approach. A total of 100 respondents from three weredas were involved in the survey. When the Pearson relationship of the different independent variables is seen in relation to agricultural production, factors such as investment and construction of ponds, investment in purchase of inputs, investment in purchase of pumps, total irrigated land in ha and revenue from agricultural products are playing an important role in promoting agricultural production and there is positive and significant relationship to agricultural production. The research result also identified that the problems of small-scale irrigations as shortage of agricultural inputs specially improved seed and pesticides, financial constraints especially for the purchase of motor pumps, high cost of irrigation, shortage of water pump technologies, spare parts and gabions, technical problems such as maintenance of motor pumps, insufficient market information and market networks, shortage of ponds and diversion, infrastructure specially road and storage, theft of fruits, diseases and pests. The result of the research also indicates that there is potential for the development of small-scale irrigation specially water, land and labour. In conclusion, if small-scale irrigation schemes are to play their role, an integrated effort of all development partners such as government (specifically Bureau of Agriculture and Rural Development, Woreda Office of Agriculture and Rural Development), cooperative promoters, microfinance institutions, private banks, donor agencies, private sector and the society at large is crucial to address the aforementioned problems faced by farmers. Moreover, farmers should establish viable and strong linkages with development /extension agents and other cooperative societies in the areas of irrigation, agricultural production, finance, marketing and technology adoption.
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