Islamabad: September 02, 2015
Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif chaired a high level meeting with representatives of agriculture sector at Prime Minister House today.
The meeting deliberated over issues and problems faced by the agriculture sector in the wake of downward trends in the international commodity markets which has inducted its impact on the domestic agricultural commodity market.
Surplus stocks of agricultural products in international and domestic markets have put pressure on the support price mechanism and profitability of the agricultural production has been affected.
The meeting was informed that in Pakistan agriculture is mainly a small farmer’s business, living in rural areas and any price shock has damaging effects on millions of small farmers earning their livelihood from agriculture sector.
The meeting agreed that the Pakistani agriculture is suffering from global phenomenon and a strategy is required to come out of this economic situation.
The meeting was informed that in view of the situation, Planning Commission organised a Forum on agriculture pricing trends and its possible implications on rural economy in August 2015. The forum presented a set of recommendations for consideration by the government in today’s meeting.
The meeting deliberated in detail on the recommendations of the forum with regard to problems faced by the producers of major crops like Rice, Sugar-cane, Cotton, Wheat and vegetables.
The meeting analysed and evaluated implications of the government interventions to manage the price fluctuations while keeping the interests of both the producers and consumers in view not to adversely affect any segment of the society.
The high costs of agricultural inputs were discussed and the Prime Minister directed to devise proposals to bring down the cost of inputs to improve per acre yield and profitability.
The Prime Minister directed that the Ministry of National Food Security may initiate measures to attract investment in high-tech seed industry and suggest if there is any legislation required to do that.
Prime Minister also directed to develop standards for use of agricultural machinery to improve their efficiency. Provincial governments were directed to initiate process for implementation of the recommendations of the agriculture forum.
The meeting was attended by Engineer Khurram Dastgir, Minister Commerce; Mr. Muhammad Ishaq Dar, Minister for Finance; Mr. Riaz Hussain Pirzada, Minister for IPC; Mr. Sikandar Hayat Bosan, Minister for National Food Security; Mr. Ahsan Iqbal, Minister for Planning and Mr. Sartaj Aziz, Adviser to the PM, federal secretary National Food security, Secretary agriculture from Punjab, sindh, kpk and Balochistan.