We have been striving hard to make agriculture competitive and profitable through improved crop production on sustainable basis: Minister

We have been striving hard to make agriculture competitive and profitable through improved crop production on sustainable basis: Minister

 

Islamabad, August 24, 2015 (PPI-OT): We have been striving hard to make agriculture competitive and profitable through improved crop production on sustainable basis. However with increasing population and little arable land left to expand farming; the impact of low productivity on hunger, mal nutrition and poverty could be severe. This was stated by Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan while addressing the annual conference of Agriculture Innovation Program (AIP).

AIP is a collaborative effort of USAID (US Agency for International Development), CIMMYT (International Maize and Wheat Improvement Centre) and PARC (Pakistan Agricultural Research Council) aimed at encouraging use of modern technology in Pakistan’s agriculture sector. AIP is expected to promote economic growth and higher household income level by equipping farmers with productivity enhancement skills, modern technologies and management practices.

The minister reiterated that there is a dire need of investment in agricultural research and development. The minister stressed on a closer watch on the impact of emerging global technologies and dissemination of the suitable ones to the respective farming communities. The minister urged the farmers to take part in AIP interventions, learn new practices, adopt new technologies and improve agricultural productivity for a food secure Pakistan.

Later on the federal minister also held a detailed meeting with the CIMMYT team lead by Dr Martin Kropff, DG CIMMYT International. The following areas were highlighted for future collaboration; establishment of Borlaug Institute for South Asia, WPEP-Phase 2, exchange of enhanced germplasm. The minister stressed upon the need for crop pattern revision, trainings for young scientists, joint research efforts for enhanced production, soil analysis and mapping.

In the end, the minister acknowledged the continuous support of USAID, international experts, PARC, CIMMYT and other AIP partners that have been pivotal in agricultural development in Pakistan.

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