Islamabad January 19 2022: Federal Minister of National Food Security and Research Syed Fakhar Imam chaired the 16th meeting of National Coordination Committee of the Agriculture Transformation Plan today on Wednesday 19th January, 2022 in Islamabad.
Fakhar Imam said that Agriculture Transformation Plan will ensure prosperous future of the farmers. He said that it is imperative to ensure extensive outreach of Kissan Card Scheme. He was briefed that approximately 700,000 Kissan Cards have been distributed in Punjab. He said Agriculture credit facility is equally important in facilitating the farmer.
Fakhar directed that the execution of Agriculture Credit Facility for the farmers should be done on priority basis. He advised to further accelerate the process regarding finalizing the mechanism to distribute subsidized agricultural implements to farmers.
Imam said that quality of seed is one of the primary factors that decide the productivity of a crop. He said that to improve productivity of crops the quality and provision of high quality seed must be enhanced. He was briefed that upgrades seed processing plants will be in-place by 2023 for Punjab Seed Department.
Fakhar said that the developed world is working on developing hybrid seed for wheat which would increase productivity by 30-40%. He emphasized that the quality of seed is crucial to increasing overall production and productivity of any crop.
Fakhar said that the world is moving towards organic farming and Pakistan should be equipped to catch up with them through the successful implementation of ATP. Fakhar said that collaboration with Chinese Academy of Agriculture Sciences could be a game changer for Pakistan. He said that we need to exchange expertise on mechanization, new variety development and germplasm.
Minister said that China leads the world in agriculture mechanization and Pakistan can catapult its agriculture sector through learning from their knowledge and experience. Imam said that Agriculture Transformation Plan will revitalize the farmer of the country.
He said that the current government under the leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan has put special emphasize on the upgradation of the Agriculture Sector. He said that almost 19 % of GDP is directly contributed by the Agriculture Sector and that through value addition it can become the back bone of the country. Minister was briefed about the on-going efforts of the provinces to ensure availability and price control of fertilizers. He said that these measures need to be further strengthened in order to protect the small farmer. Fakhar Imam ensured all the participants that necessary steps will be immediately taken to provide any support needed by the provinces.
Earlier, Dr Abid Suleri highlighted the importance of Food Security Dashboard for evidence based decision making. While appreciating the relevant provincial departments for providing the data on wheat for Dashboard, he emphasised that data on sugar prices should also be provided on a regular basis. Chief Secretary Punjab directed the department of industries to do the needful.
The meeting was convened by Dr. Abid Qaiyum Suleri and was attended by Chief Secretaries of Punjab and KPK, Chairman PARC, Secretary Agriculture of Punjab, Sindh, KPK and Balochistan and senior officials of ministry of national food security and research.