‘Biotechnology can transform Pakistan’s economy’

Published: March 6, 2019
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'Pakistan is currently importing edible oil whereas it can produce oilseeds locally to meet domestic needs'

PHOTO: FILE

'Pakistan is currently importing edible oil whereas it can produce oilseeds locally to meet domestic needs' PHOTO: FILE

FAISALABAD: A close and productive working relationship between the Faisalabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FCCI), National Textile University (NTU) and National Institute for Biotechnology and Genetics Engineering (NIBGE) is imperative to reorganise the industrial sector on modern scientific lines.

Addressing the FCCI Standing Committee on Technical Training and Industry-Academia Linkages, NIBGE Director Dr Shahid Mansoor explained in detail the new inventions including nanotechnology.

He said Faisalabad was predominantly an agro-industrial city and textile was the mainstay of its economy. “In order to face future challenges, we must add value to the entire chain of textile sector right from ginning up to fashion garments,” he added.

‘Time to embrace technologically advanced approaches’

He told the committee that NIBGE had world-class laboratories where testing facilities were also available and domestic exporters must take advantage of the facilities.

Regarding agriculture, Mansoor told the participants that NIBGE had been working on different crops including rice. “It has evolved many new varieties and strains of different crops, which are high-yielding and have resistance against different diseases.”

“Pakistan is currently importing edible oil whereas it can produce oilseeds locally to meet domestic needs,” he said. Speaking on the occasion, NIBGE Principal Scientific Officer Dr Waheed S Khan said biotechnology could transform Pakistan’s economy by enhancing the shelf-life of perishable commodities including vegetables and fruits.

“We have knowledge, skills and technology, but the FCCI has to play its role in convincing different sectors to adopt these technologies in order to improve the quality of their exportable surplus.” He also highlighted that NIBGE invented in many new products and technologies. 

Published in The Express Tribune, March 6th, 2019.

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