Provincial Minister for Finance Dr. Ayesha Ghous Pasha has said that agriculture is a major contributor to the national economy, accounting for over 21 percent of its GDP. About 80% of the country’s foreign exchange originates from agriculture and Punjab contributes over 70% to this amount. Our whole progress depends on uplifting of this sector. This is the reason that Government of the Punjab is taking revolutionary steps for achieving agriculture highest growth rate.
Distribution of 100 billion interest free loans, 39 Billion rupees subsidy on DAP fertilizers, 500 million rupees subsidy to the farmers on cultivation of oilseed crop (Canola & Sunflower), Provision of 9000 Laser land leveler on subsidized rates, transformation of Potohar Region into Olive Valley, Improved irrigation network at farm level, made by spending Rs.5 Billion and 39,320 acre land converted into High Efficiency Irrigation System (HEIS) are part of our revolutionary plan.
For the first time in history of Pakistan, Agriculture sector showed a remarkable growth rate of 3.46% during 2016-17 against -0.27 % during 2015-16. No doubt, Kissan Package inclusion contributes a great deal in this growth rate, currently agriculture sector growth rate is 5.75%, she added,
She further said that Government is well aware of the fact that farmers are facing lot of problems due to International crisis in prices of agriculture commodities and a lot of things still need to be done. She expressed these views while addressing the launching ceremony of Connected Agriculture Platform Punjab CAPP, organized by Agriculture Department in collaboration with Telenor Pakistan. Secretary Agriculture Ray Mehmood, Chairman PITB Umer Saif, CEO Akhuwat foundation, Marketing Officer Telenor Bilal Kazmi, CEO Karandaaz, representatives of NBP, ZTBL, Telenor Micro Financing and NRSP were also present on the occasion.
Secretary Agriculture said that CAPP is a begging of a modern era in agriculture regime. Prior to this program, farmer has neither authenticated sources to know about marketing rates of different agriculture commodities nor he can visualize the modern techniques for cultivation of crops.