Long summer destroys 80% of gourd fields in KP
The unusual hot weather in current year, which still persists in the usually cold month of October, has destroyed around 80 percent of gourd fields in Khyber Pakhtunkwa, impacting livelihood of thousands of people associated with farming of this vegetable. Gourd is being cultivated in vast lands of Mardan and Buner districts of KP, informed Dr Tariq Nawaz Khattak, Bio-chemist and Research Officer in NIFA (Nuclear Institute for Food and Agriculture).
Set up over 800 community organisations in Balochistan
The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), in collaboration with USAID, has established more than eight hundred community organisations in Balochistan to increase the production, sale and revenues from crops and livestock. ?A total of 826 community organisations have helped improving incomes for 16,000 households in Balochistan,? said Patrick Evans, the FAO representative, in a statement on Friday.
PMEX organises Red chilli ceremony
Pakistan Mercantile Exchange (PMEX), the country's only multi-commodity exchange, organized a ceremony at its head office in Karachi, to mark the handing over of subsidy by SEDF. Naheed Memon, Chairperson, Sindh Enterprise Development Fund (SEDF)/Sindh Board of Investment, handed over a subsidy cheque for the Red Chilli farmers to Ejaz Ali Shah, Managing Director, PMEX.
Investors want FCA to declare wheat sowing cut-off date
Perturbed over the continuous decline in the production of oilseeds for the last four to five years and increase in import bill of edible oil, the stakeholders of oilseed sector have decided to recommend the Federal Committee on Agriculture (FCA) to declare wheat sowing cut-off date creating space for sunflowers cultivation. The stakeholders also called for devising a long-term oilseed and food security policy in the country. The FCA meeting is planned to be held on October 25, 2016.
Chinese interested in water sector
A delegation led by China First Metallurgy Group Vice Chairman Guo Jizhou calls on Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif here on Thursday. The Chinese delegation expressed interest in investment in water sector of Punjab.
Talking to the delegation, the chief minister said that China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) has given new dimension to Pakistan-China friendship and China is fully supporting Pakistan?s progress and prosperity.
REAP looks to govt to revive rice exports
Rice Export Association of Pakistan (REAP) on Friday expressed concern over huge decline in Basmati and non-Basmati rice export during last two years and urged the government to take appropriate measures to prevent further loss of foreign exchange in this regard. According to REAP Chairman Mahmood Moulvi, Pakistan has suffered 44 percent decline in rice exports.
September rice exports down 29 percent YoY
Pakistan is losing rice market due to lack of research and non-availability of new seeds. These factors have resulted in a massive 29 percent decline in rice exports during September 2016. Rice export trade is the second largest foreign exchange earner, ie, some $2 billion annually. However, during last two years, rice export trade is facing severe crisis and exports falling down.
Exports of Basmati rice fall
The exports of Basmati rice have registered a decline of 40.54 percent during last five years from 1,137,943 metric tonnes in 2010-2011 to 676,630 metric tonnes in 2014-15 while non-Basmati rice exports have witnessed a growth of 19.15 percent from 2,563,664 metric tonnes to 3,054,680 metric tonnes during the same period.
Bosan lauds Engro's Rahbar programme
Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan has lauded Engro's Rahbar programme hailing it as a unique initiative introduced to address and find solutions that would, in the near future, improve Pakistan's food security as well as drive sustainable economic growth within the country.
Govt to train 1,000 more Baloch farmers
Minister for National Food Security and Research, Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan Tuesday said that the government would train 1,000 more farmers in latest agriculture techniques from Balochistan to explore the rich agriculture potential as well as development of the sector in the province. Addressing the closing ceremony of Balochistan Agriculture Development Project, he said more than 1000 farmers were trained during last year with latest cultivation technologies, water management and post-harvest mechanism and seed qualities.
Punjab package for sowing pulses enters final phase
The Punjab government's three-year package worth Rs 148 million for promotion of sowing of pulses in the province has entered the final phase launched under 'Khushal Kissan-Developed Pakistan' programme. Grams, masoor, mong and mash are the most important pulses which are sown in the province but there is great room for increasing per acre yield. Scientists have developed various new varieties having more production capability, said a spokesman of the Punjab Agriculture Department on Tuesday.
PM asks ministry to devise plan for farmer's credit line
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif Monday directed the Ministry of National Food Security and Research to come up with Integrated Rural Development Plan for building affordable credit line for subsistence farmers through formal financial institutions.
Country likely to miss even revised cotton output target
It is feared that Pakistan will miss the revised cotton production target for year 2016-17 by more than two million bales. Official sources said that 30 per cent reduction in sowing area of Punjab would be the main hurdle in likely non-achievement of the production target.
FPCCI asks PM not to ignore horticulture, rice sectors
Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FPCCI) has said that Prime Minister should take the ownership of exports and implement the upcoming incentives package for exporters from the day of announcement in order to make it useful and helpful.
Shangla's red persimmon popular for its fine taste
Persimmon is the popular fruit of Shangla where over 2,000 orchards exist and trees of red and tasty persimmon line the roads of the valley. Local people say that the persimmon produced in Shangla has a unique taste and its beautiful shape and color attract buyers. The fruit is locally known as ?Soor Amlok? or red persimmon.
Govt finalisng flood protection plan, says Ahsan
Federal Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Ahsan Iqbal on Monday said the government is finalizing National Flood Protection Plan to minimize the damages of floods. He was inaugurating a three-day annual meeting of the Regional Consultative Committee on Disaster Management in Islamabad on Monday to deliberate on options for disaster risk reduction through regional cooperation.
Dar stresses maintaining fertiliser stock around the year
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar chaired a meeting here to review the fertilizer stock position in the country in view of the forthcoming cropping season. The Minister was briefed on the fertilizer production and inventory position in the country. He said that strategic reserves of fertilizer must continue to be maintained at all times to ensure food security.
India halts exports of vegetables to Pakistan
India has completely halted export of vegetables to Pakistan, a presidential candidate of FPCCI, Zubair F Tufail said. Tufail said that Pakistan is one of the biggest importers of vegetables from India due to its low price. He said due to current tension on LoC, the two-way trade between India and Pakistan has adversely affected.
PMEX Organizes Red Chilli Awareness Program at Kunri
Pakistan Mercantile Exchange Limited (PMEX), Pakistan's first and only multi-commodity futures exchange, organized an awareness program on red chilli trade for farmers and traders in Kunri, District Umer Kot.
Government urged to enact law for female farm workers
The Kisan Board Pakistan (KBP) has urged the government to enact legislation for female farm workers to protect their rights and put an end to injustices perpetrated against them. Kisan Board Pakistan Central President, Chaudhry Nisar Ahmad Khan, in connection with the International Rural Female Day falling on October 15, urged the government to take practical steps for ending injustices on female farm workers.
Farmers asked to get wheat seeds
The Punjab agriculture department has advised the growers of Barani (rain fed) areas to get their wheat seeds, retained by them from last crop, cleaned by the seed graders provided by the department free of cost. Cleaning of thin and broken seeds affected due to pests is essential. It said that the seed graders should also be used for cleaning the weeds and other waste material from the seeds.
Sindh govt. asked to fix procurement rate sugarcane
The Sindh Abadgar Ittehad has demanded of the Sindh Government to fix the official procurement rate for sugarcane crop at Rs 220 per maund while rejecting the recently fixed rate of Rs 182. At a press conference at Hyderabad press club on Thursday, Ittehad's President Nawab Zubair Talpur and General Secretary advocate Ali Palh complained that their organisation was not consulted before deciding the rate.
Misuse of 339 agriculture farms
The Public Accounts Committee (PAC)'s sub-committee has expressed utter displeasure over the silence of Capital Development Authority (CDA) regarding misuse of 339 agriculture farms. The committee met on Friday under the chair of convenor Shahida Akhtar Ali which examined the audit reports of the CDA.
Experts urge for effective water policy
Experts at Seminar on ?Indus Water Treaty? urged for effective water policy to save water reservoirs and development in Agriculture Sectors. The seminar was organised by the Society for the Promotion of Engineering Sciences and Technology in Pakistan (SOPREST) an expert working group, here on Saturday. The SOPREST is the body that manages the Ghulam Ishaq Khan Institute of Engineering Sciences and Technology in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Pak lags behind world in eggs, poultry meat
Pakistani poultry sector is producing more than 12,000 million table eggs per annum but country?s per capita consumption is only 65-70 eggs annually.The world average consumption is around 160 eggs with developed world consuming as much as 300 eggs per capita per annum. ?Recent nutrition survey results from World Bank revealed that Pakistan is included in countries where severe stunting (43%) in young children is found at alarming level.
Govt. urged to focus on horticulture
Chairman Regional Standing Committee on Horticulture Exports of Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FPCCI) Ahmad Jawad proposed that if government wishes to enhance exports in a short period of time then they should focus on horticulture, rice, Halal meat products.
FFC holds symposium on Operational Excellence
Fauji Fertiliser Company (FFC) organized a two days Symposium on Operational Excellence at its head office in Rawalpindi. Professionals from Various national and international companies participated in the event. The main aim of the event was to provide an opportunity to the industry professionals to interact and share their knowledge and experience in technology application in the maintenance and operations of fertilizer plants.
Livestock department launches duck rearing project
The Punjab Livestock and Dairy Development Department (L&DDD) has planned to launch a project titled 'propagation of ducks rearing in Punjab' at an estimated cost of Rs 45 million under which people living near water bodies in the rural areas will be given a unit of local breed of ducks free of cost.
KBP urges govt. to early payments Sugarcane growers
Kissan Board Pakistan (KBP) Central President Chaudhry Nisar Ahmad has called upon the government to draft agricultural-friendly policies and ensure payment to sugarcane growers in order to save the farmers from different mental diseases.
Bosan appreciates FAO for role in uplift of agri sector
Pakistan Monday acknowledged the role of Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations in Pakistan for improvement of agriculture sector and poverty reduction. This was stated by Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research (NFSR) Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan in a meeting with Director General FAO-Rome H.E. Jose Graziano da Silva during his visit to Pakistan, a statement said here.
AGP detects massive mismanagement in ZTBL
Auditor General of Pakistan (AGP) has claimed to have detected billions of rupees of financial mismanagement in Zarai Tarqiati Bank Limited (ZTBL) besides declaring Kissan Support Service(s) Limited (KSSL), a company established without the approval of SBP, as illegal.
PFVA achieves mango export target
Pakistan Fruit and Vegetable Exporters Importers and Merchant Association (PFVA) has achieved a number of milestones during the last one year for promotion of horticulture exports aimed to earn more foreign exchange for the country. Addressing the annual general meeting former chairman Waheed Ahmed informed that for the first time, President Mamnoon Hussain and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, ministries and other institutions appreciated PFVA for its dedicated efforts in promoting exports and exploring new markets for the horticulture products.
DG FAO calls on PM
Jose Graziano da Silva, DG Food & Agriculture Organisation (FAO) called on Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif at PM House on Thursday. Welcoming Jose Graziano da Silva on visiting Pakistan, the Prime Minister acknowledged the contribution and efforts made by FAO for poverty reduction and food security. The PM also commended the initiatives of the organisation for sustainable livelihood and rural development in Pakistan.
CCAC Revies Production Estimates Downword
The Cotton Crop Assessment Committee (CCAC) on Thursday revised cotton production estimates downward for the second time in the current season to 11.039 million bales against the initial estimates of 14.1 million bales for the current season (2016-17). Second meeting of CCAC for the season 2016-17 was held to assess the volume of current cotton crop in the country, under the chairmanship of Hassan Iqbal, Federal Secretary Ministry of Textile Industry.
Indus, Jhelum Rivers to provide 16MAF water for Rabi crops
The Flood Forecasting Division said here on Thursday that River Indus at Tarbela Dam and River Jhelum at Mangla will provide 16 million acre feet (MAF) water from October to March for sowing, growing and maturing the Rabi crops 2016-17. The water flows of other two live rivers namely Kabul and Chanab are not included in this forecast of water availability for the winter season crops.
Sindh govt. to start e-trading of agri products through PMEX
The Sindh government has devised a strategy for e-trading of agriculture products through Pakistan Mercantile Exchange (PMEX) platform. The decision was made at a meeting chaired by Sindh Board of Investment (SBI) Chairperson Naheed Memon at her office.
43 Motorbikes distributed dairy sector technicians
Alyson McFarland, United States Agency for International Development's (USAID) Provincial Director for Punjab, joined Chairman Dairy and Rural Development Foundation Dr Salman Shah here on Tuesday at a ceremony to distribute motorbikes to 43 dairy sector technicians at the University of Veterinary & Animal Sciences in Lahore.
Fruit exports up by 57%
The exports of fruit from the country surged by 57 percent during the first two months of the current fiscal year, as compared to the corresponding period of last year.
Farmers reject the proposed tobacco eradication bill
Tobacco farmers have out-rightly rejected the proposed Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Prohibition of Smoking/Tobacco Products and Protection of Non-Smokers Health Bill, 2016, and termed it as anti-growers step. They demanded to make amendments into the bill, with consultation with them, before its formal promulgation from the provincial assembly.
FAO DG speaks about global demand-supply trends
Minister for National Food Security and Research, Sikandar Hayat Khan Wednesday assured the full support of the government to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) in improving the agricultural sector and eradication of pests and diseases of agro related commodities and livestock.
Timely completion of fruit market demanded
The delegation of Hyderabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (HCCI) led by former Vice President Ziauddin Qureshi has called upon the Commissioner Hyderabad Shahid Pervez Qazi to form a monitoring committee for timely completion of the development work of the new fruits and vegetables market of Hyderabad. The HCCI delegation emphasised this during the meeting with Commissioner Hyderabad here at his office on Wednesday to discuss the issue of delay in completion of work of the market.
Experts exhort govt. to expedite construction of dams
The water sector experts have urged the government of Pakistan to expedite construction of dams to save the potential of Indus River. They said during the past 55 years, India strengthened herself by constructing a number of dams while putting Pakistan in a troublesome situation due to various controversies.
NA calls for early construction of Diamer-Bhasha Dam
The National Assembly on Tuesday passed three separate resolutions including a resolution urging the government to take steps for early construction of Diamer-Bhasha dam. MNA Khalida Mansoor moved the resolution on the Diamer-Bhasha dam. Lal Chand presented the resolution to stop forced conversions and marriages of women belonging to minorities and Mussarat Ahmad Zeb also moved a resolution to rename Swat Airport as "Major General Sanaullah Khan Niazi Shaheed Airport," in the House. The House unanimously adopted all these resolutions.
QWP chief calls for timely completion of Diamer-Bhasha
Chairman Qaumi Watan Party (QWP) Aftab Ahmed Khan Sherpao has demanded the timely completion of Diamer-Bhasha Dam and ongoing hydel power generation projects that would be addressed the ongoing electricity shortages for effective implementation of CPEC projects in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. He was addressing a mass gathering of people in District Shangla. Senior Minister for Irrigation Sikandar Hayat Khan Sherpao and QWP Secretary General Hashim Baber were also present on the occasion.
Punjab agri department launches Rs 4.34 billion project
The Punjab agriculture department has launched Rs 4.34 billion programme to collect 592,000 soil samples from the cultivated land across the province in order to guide the growers about these samples for balanced and rational use of chemical fertilisers.
Reluctance of provinces' cooperation major reason
Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research Sikander Hayat Bosan on Monday informed Senate that reluctance of provinces to cooperate with federal government is major reason for failure to boost agriculture sector in the country.
SCA condemns India's water war threat
The Sindh Chamber of Agriculture has condemned Indian threat of reneging Indus Water Treaty, urging the government to take the matter on the global forums. A meeting at the SCA's secretariat here Sunday, chaired by its President Dr Syed Nadeem Qamar, said any Indian attempt to block or reduce the river flows would be a violation of the treaty.
Reap vows to take rice exports to $4 billion by 2020
The newly-elected office-bearers of the Rice Exporters Association of Pakistan (Reap) took charge of their offices at the 18th Annual General Meeting held Friday night with pledge to take the rice exports to USD 4 billion per annum by year 2020 from the present level of USD 2 billion per annum. Mahmood Baqi Moulvi took charge as Reap Chairman for 2016-17 from the outgoing Chairman Ch. Muhammad Shafique while Shahjahan Malik and Bilal Muhammad came in as Senior Vice Chairman and Vice Chairman respectively. Haji Abdul Rauf Chappal will be the treasurer for the year 2016-17.
Seafood export falls to $29.46 million in July-August
The country's seafood export continues to fall, reaching $29.465 million in July-August 2016, down by 10 percent, official figures said. Seafood export decline comes to the tune of $3.205 million in July-August 2016 from $32.670 million in July-August 2015, Pakistan Bureau of Statistics indicated. Seafood export volume posted a less than one percent or 67 metric tons decline to 13,262 metric tons in July-August 2016 as compared the commodity's export of 13,329m in July-August 2015.
Up to 11.2 million bales of cotton production expected
Production of up to 11.2 million bales of cotton was expected this season as compared to 10 million bales produced in the previous year.According to a top official in the Ministry of Textile Industry, the selling price of cotton seeds from Rs 3,000 to 3,200 per 40-KG encouraged farmers to cultivate cotton crops on more land and enhance the cotton production in this season,Talking to media, he said the experts and scientists helped train more than 8,000 farmers to overcome losses of cotton crops and evolved measures against the virus which harmed the cotton crops in the past.
Urea sales increased by 34 percent in August
Urea sales in the country in August 2016 have increased by 34 percent as compared to the same month last year. However, the urea sales declined by 26 percent as compared with July 2016 as seasonal slowdown weigh in, analysts said. As per the latest data released by National Fertilizer Development Centre (NFDC) for the month of August 2016, urea sales stood at 574,000 tons.
Growers feel the pinch due to low cotton rates
The cotton growers are disappointed at the low rates being offered to them for their produce by traders and cotton factories in the South Punjab.The Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had announced last year a relief package for the farmers after the damage of the crop due to bad weather conditions in the cotton belt area in Muzaffargarh district.The traders and cotton factories are offering only Rs3,000 to Rs3,100 per 40kg price to growers. The growers say how can they accept the offer at such low rates as they paid as much as Rs2,000 per bag for fertilizers and Rs3,700 per bag for DAP.
Snags in trading with Russia
PAKISTAN?S horticulture sector, it goes without saying, has a huge export potential and its fruits and vegetables are in great demand in several regional markets.Russia is one such market currently interested in Pakistan?s kinnows and potatos.However, things are not going as smoothly as one expected. Over the years, trade relations between the two countries, though on the rise, have never been amiable, with a tendency of suddenly becoming sour. For instance, in 2012 a Russian quarantine team that visited Pakistan?s horticulture growing areas showed its reservations on the quality of the crops and spelled out its pre-condition.
The onion market
Sindh is set to reap a bumper onion crop amidst growers? fears of market prices falling owing to abundant supplies; as witnessed in the initial stage of arrival of the commodity in the Karachi market. A surplus onion crop is a serious issue, worsened by lack of proper storage and dehydration facilities. While the crop supply will be in full swing from next month, its growers are currently getting a low price. A 40kg gunny bag of onion is being sold for Rs400-500 in the wholesale market.
The growing interest in corporate farming
CORPORATE farming has gained traction in the wake of the Kissan package for the agriculture sector in the last budget, as a growing number of companies are enrolling themselves with the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan. As many as 185 such companies have been incorporated from Sept 15, 2015 to Sept 27, 2016. Most of them are in seed, fish farming, poultry, livestock and feed businesses. It raises hope for an injection of fresh investment.
Reforms in agriculture sector top priority
The visits of foreign investors for search of business opportunities in Punjab are a sign of their confidence in the economic uplift of Pakistan, said Punjab Finance Minister Dr Ayesha Ghaus Pasha during her meeting with Polish Ambassador Piotr Opalinsic on Friday. Secretary Agriculture Cap Muhammad Mehmood (r), Additional Secretary Energy Ifat Farooq and General Manager Business Development Mines Zafar Chishti were also present on the occasion.
18 percent water shortages for Sindh, Punjab from today
Indus River System Authority (Irsa) on Friday approved 18 percent water shortages for Sindh and Punjab respectively in Rabi 2016 which will commence from October 1. Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhawa (KP) are exempted from shortages. This decision was taken at a meeting of Irsa Advisory Council presided over by Chairman Irsa, Rao Irshad Ali Khan convened to finalise share of provinces in the light of water availability during the Rabi season.
IRSA allocates water to provinces for Rabi crops today
The Advisory Committee of the Indus River System Authority IRSA comprising top officials of the four provinces meeting today (Friday) to draw up an irrigation plan keeping in view the projected 18 percent irrigation water shortfall for Rabi crops 2016-17 and allocate water to the provinces according to their share under the 1991 Water Accord.
Belarusian wants to set up tractor assembling plant
Ambassador of Belarus Andrei Ermolovich met Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif, here on Friday. Director General of a prominent tractor manufacturing company of Belarus Fedor Domotenko was also present on the occasion. The Chief Minister talked to Belarusian delegation in Russian language upon which the members of the delegation expressed pleasant surprise and appreciated the command of Shahbaz Sharif over Russian. Diplomat said they were pleased to see the Chief Minister of the biggest province of Pakistan talking in Russian language.