Pakistan. Potential of agriculture, food exports highlight

20.12.2016

The chairman of the Regional Standing Committee on Horticultural and Agricultural Produce of the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Ahmad Jawad, has said that horticultural exports could go as high as $7 billion in the next decade. But that result could be achieved only if research and development is vigorously pursued and suitable infrastructure is established.

The fact that Pakistan's share in global horticultural exports is an infinitesimal 0.3% is due to lack of priorities of the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) and PHDEC, he said. He said the Ministry of Commerce and Planning Commission should draft and implement a horticultural export policy for the 2015-20 period on priority and enlist the yearly allocation in the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP) after consultation with the FPCCI

"Pakistani fruits and vegetables have great export potential," he said, "but that needs to be sustained for the capture of a hungry world markets where Pakistani mangoes, dates and kinnows in particular are in great demand." In the rice sector, he added, the $2 billion earned in rice exports originates from Punjab. The production of Irri-6 is in Sindh and Punjab, which also comes under the mandate of TDAP.

"The FPCCI and other departments should play a more prominent role in efforts to enhance exports of fresh produce to increase Pakistan's export volumes," he remarked. According to Jawad, apart from calamities like floods, the main cause of import of fruits and vegetables is "our non-serious attitude towards infrastructure, R&D and related issues, coupled with our inherent national characteristic of resolving problems only when they get out of control." He said that the only way to capture the g


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