Experts propose Pak-China agri-council

Say future crop output, food security rely on tech progress, good policies

APP May 11, 2024


Experts at a policy dialogue have demanded that a Pakistan-China council on agricultural development, led by the private sector of both countries, should be set up with focus on technology transfer and capacity building of Pakistani farmers in modern technologies under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

The policy dialogue was arranged by the Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) on the topic of “Greening of the CPEC: Sustainable Agriculture in Pakistan and Learning from China” on Friday.

Former CPEC project director and former Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Board of Investment CEO Dr Hassan Daud Butt said the future of agricultural production and food security relied on technology advancement, good policies and the leadership.

However, it is pertinent to establish a council for agricultural development, led by the private sector and while forging linkages with Chinese counterparts, which will help achieve targets swiftly.

He emphasised that China had made massive progress in the field of agriculture through consistent policies, leadership and technology-driven interventions.

Butt pointed out that China’s progress in the agriculture sector was unique as less public capital and more private investment were utilised for its development.

“Pakistan needs to learn from the Chinese about planning for short, medium and long-term goals with a top-to-bottom approach and policy consistency. Moreover, the leadership in the public and private sectors needs to be strengthened through mutual collaboration,” he said.

While the SDPI’s study was based on sustainable agricultural development via lessons learnt from China, he urged authors of the report to add livestock as a component to further broaden the scope with insights on marketing aspects as well.Research Associate Misbah Khan highlighted findings of the report titled “Scoping Study on Agriculture Development in Pakistan”.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 11th, 2024.

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