Measures being taken for development of agriculture sector in Pakistan under CPEC phase-II: PARB chief

Faisalabad: Chairman Punjab Agriculture Research Board (PARB) Dr Abid Mahmood has said that various measures were being taken for the development of agriculture sector in the country under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) phase-II which would help to promote the exports of fisheries, livestock and agriculture products.

Addressing an international seminar held under the aegis of the oilseeds department at Ayub Agriculture Research Institute here, he said mentioned that previous year, Pakistan had exported sesame of Rs 32 billion and there is a vast scope to enhance the oilseeds production in the country to boost the exports.

Mahmood predicted that Pakistan would soon achieve self-sufficiency in cooking oil by increasing its oilseed production for that purpose, Punjab Agriculture Research Board had approved Pakistani Rs 100 billion Oilseed and Soybean project.

He maintained that Ayyub Agriculture Research Institute Faisalabad had introduced more than 40 varieties of oilseeds and pre-basic seeds had been provided to over 32 private seed companies besides Punjab Seed Corporation.

Mahmood was confident that Pakistan could earn huge foreign exchange by exporting oilseeds products to other countries.

“A significant increase in production of various crops has been witnessed by provision of quality seed to small farmers during the last two to three years. Now oilseed crops have become cash crops,” he added.

The representative to a China Machinery Engineering Corporation Alen Che expressing his views said that under CPEC project, several Chinese companies were active in Pakistan for increasing per acre yield of different crops and promotion of cultivation through machinery and corporate farming.

Chairman Poultry Association Pakistan Dr Rana Sajjad Arshad opined that egg and meat were the basic need of every kitchen adding that 4.5 million populations were increasing every year in Pakistan and fulfilling their food needs has become a challenge.

“There is a dire need of increasing per acre yield of high-value poultry needed crops including Maize and Soybean to boost the poultry and egg exports,” he said.

Hafiz Saad Bin Mustafa, Mian Idrees Ahmed, Miss Saira and others also expressed their views. Later, shields were distributed among agriculture scientists.