Agriculture is an important branch of Uzbekistan's economy, providing the population with food, industries and raw materials.
Uzbekistan annually produces over 17 million tons of fruits and vegetables: more than 300 kg of vegetables, 75 kg of potatoes and 44 kg of grapes per capita, which is three times higher than the optimal consumption standards generally accepted globally. Since ancient times, to fight against drought, the people of Uzbekistan have learned to use river water for irrigation, thus creating several irrigation systems. As a result of the agricultural sector diversification, most fields previously used for cultivating cotton are now occupied by vineyards, potatoes and other crops.
The development of this sector of the economy is hindered by an inadequate supply of water resources. Given the growth of the country's population and increase in the agricultural land area, the problem is becoming more severe.
For a large agrarian country with an arid, hot climate and long summer seasons, water will always remain an important strategic resource. Thus, problems with the water supply can affect national security as well.