Islamabad, September 09, 2021 (PPI-OT): The members of the National Assembly Special Committee on Agricultural Products urged the government to holistically address the structural, operational and policy issues to accelerate the country’s agricultural exports. It was revealed that higher cost of production, low level of farms productivity, lack of research in seed development and infrastructural bottlenecks precludes Pakistan’s quest for enhanced agricultural export value and competitiveness.
The members stressed that without meaningful intervention, modernization and structural transformation of the agriculture sector, food inflation would derail prospects of Pakistan’s economic growth. The Sub-Committee led by Shandana Gulzar Khan was tasked to zero in on the problems of the agricultural exporters and make recommendations to eliminate the hindrances to enhancing the country’s export value.
The Speaker National Assembly has initiated a series of meetings of the Special Committee to zero in on the challenges of Pakistan’s agro-economy. All Pakistan Fruits and Vegetables Exporters, Importers and Merchants Association, Rice Exporters Association and officials of the Ministry of Commerce, Food Security and Pakistan Agricultural Research Council briefed the Committee on Monday on the challenges to rice and fruits and vegetable export.
The Patron in Chief of All Pakistan Fruits and Vegetables Exporters, Importers and Merchants Association warned that without substantial intervention to support the agriculture sector, Pakistan was heading to inflation enabled food security crisis.
He referred to last year effort of Speaker National Assembly resulting in breaking previous records of Pakistan’s food and agricultural export and added that Parliamentarians had great leverage to accelerate the country’s agro-economic growth.
The exporters promised drastic improvements in enhancing Pakistan’s agricultural export if their problems were resolved. It was highlighted that Kinnow was facing acute viral diseases and insect infestation and Pakistan’s $ 200 Million export was endangered Tit was Demanded to recognize fruits and vegetables as industry and grant privileges like other export-oriented sectors including textile, carpets, leather, sports and surgical goods.
It was also maintained that Quarantine Section at Taftan and Chaman should be activated to facilitate exporters at this important border. The Committee was urged to reduce the fee for issuance of Phyto-Sanitary certificate from Rs.2, 500 to Rs.300.
The rice exporters urged to government to urgently address the availability and price of freight logistics resulting in the carryover of stocks. They highlighted that destination charges have become more than tripled in cost and yet availability is still poor to the point that exporters have not been able to fulfil their orders. It is resulting in bigger carryover of stocks than usual into the next harvest, they added.
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National Assembly of Pakistan
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