ISLAMABAD: The Ministry of National Food Security and Research will establish agriculture research and development boards in all provinces in a bid to give a push to research and innovation in the agricultural sector.
This was discussed in a meeting held on Friday at the Pakistan Agriculture Research Council (Parc), chaired by National Food Security and Research Secretary Sirat Asghar and attended by different stakeholders.
The research boards will be part of the Agricultural Innovation Programme, an initiative funded by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) and managed by the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Programme in partnership with Parc and other stakeholders.
The objectives of the innovation programme are to increase crop productivity and the production value of livestock, horticultural and cereal crops, resulting in an increase in the income of Pakistan’s farmers.
International centres like the International Livestock Research Institute, International Rice Research Institute, Asian Vegetable Research and Development Centre and University of California, Davis are working as partners to support the agricultural research community in achieving the goals of the programme.
According to an official of Parc, each of the provincial boards will have the board of directors and an executive committee to run the affairs and channel grants to the province.
The research boards will support expansion of provincial linkages to national, regional and international communities through a mechanism of coordination. They will play a growing role in the administration of competitive grants.
National Food Security and Research Secretary Sirat Asghar commented that the innovation programme was playing an important role in strengthening agricultural research.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 18th, 2015.