Pakistan, China undertakes long-term plan to boost agriculture

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DNA

ISLAMABAD, Aug. 19  –  Pakistan, China have decided to undertake a long term plan of CPEC (2020-30) to boost agriculture sector. The plan, according to a report published by Gwadar Pro on Wednesday includes upgrading agricultural infrastructure, Promoting the construction of water-saving modern agricultural zones, and
increasing the development and remediation of medium- and low-yielding land to achieve efficient use of resources.

it also focus on strengthening drip irrigation technology for water efficiency,
strengthening cooperation in the fields such as crop farming, livestock breeding, forestry and food growing and aquatic and Fishery in the regions along the CPEC’s route.

Under the plan, the two sides will also take steps improving post-harvest handling, storage and transportation of agricultural, products, and innovate in marketing and sales models.

They will also work to improve water resources operation and management,
strengthen development of pastoral areas and desert, and promote application of remote sensing technology.

It was hoped that Pak-China cooperation will lead to strengthening of production of agriculture inputs particularly pesticides, fertilizer, machinery and support services including agriculture education and research.

They also intend to collaborate in forestry, horticulture, fisheries and livestock medicines and vaccines and strengthen production of horticulture products.

According to the report, agriculture is a major component of Pakistan’s economy, if incorporated, it will increase Pakistan’s agricultural produce, and explore export opportunities in China.

It will also be in the interest of Chinese government to bring investment in the neglected agriculture sector and export surplus produce to feed the growing Chinese population.

Joint ventures, value addition, cold chain management for fruits and vegetables, marketing and branding would help Pakistan overcome weaknesses and increases agriculture exports to China and other countries.

Pak-China agricultural cooperation has to focus on the vertical increase in productivity of existing crops, transfer of knowledge and technologies, seed and plant protection as well as disease control.

The CPEC will surely help in boosting the growth of the agriculture sector and making CPEC a ‘game changer’ for Pakistan’s economy, development of infrastructure in any shape leads to growth in GDP derived from agriculture sector.

Agricultural development is one of the seven areas of cooperation under CPEC, China is specifically interested to explore areas like cotton productivity, efficient irrigation and post-harvest infrastructure along the CPEC route, the report added.