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‘Drip irrigation system economical than dams’

KARACHI: Waheed Ahmed, Patron-in-chief of All Pakistan Fruit & Vegetable Exporters, Importers & Merchants Association (PFVA), has said that if $1 billion is spent to develop “drip irrigation system” , it can save amount of water likely to be wasted  equivalent to capacity of two dams.

 

 

He said Tuesday that horticulture export can be enhanced to $2.5 billion in five years creating jobs for 1.5 million people.

All Pakistan Fruit & Vegetable Exporters, Importers & Merchants Association (PFVA) has submitted recommendations to the Federal Minister National Food Security & Research (NFSR) regarding enhancement in production and exports of fruits and vegetables leading to creation of ample employment opportunities for millions of jobless people.

Waheed Ahmed said that with introduction of 18th amendment, the agriculture sector has been terribly hurt, the provinces do not have adequate resources and potential for agriculture research leading to serious threat to food security of Pakistan and by introducing latest irrigation system in agriculture, water wastage equivalent to capacity of two dams can be saved in a period of three years.

Recently a grand event titled “Kinnow convention – 2019”was organized under the supervision of PFVA to highlight issues and potential of the horticulture sector and Federal Minister (NFSR) Sahibzada Mohammad Sultan was the chief guest. Overwhelming majority of growers of kinnow, exporters and owners of pack houses participated in this event.

The federal minister said the federal government would play a significant role in development and enhancement export of this sector. Taking advantage of the road map developed by PFVA, supporting policies would be formulated to enhance production and export of fruits and vegetables.

Waheed Ahmed highlighted that by effective implementation of “National Horticulture Vision”, a comprehensive policy on horticulture sector was developed jointly by of PFVA and FPCCI which can enhance current export of $620 million to $2.5 billion within five years and $6 billion within a span of a decade, if implemented.

By adopting this vision, he said, employment opportunities for 1.5 million people can also be created within a period of five years while 4.0 million people are anticipated to get jobs in this sector within a period of 10 years.

Pakistan is to spend $10 billion on construction of dams, which are anticipated to be commissioned in 7 to 8 years, he said. However if one billion dollars are spent to develop “drip irrigation system” , it can save amount of water likely to be wasted  equivalent to capacity of two dams.

Highlighting role of kinnow industry in the horticulture sector, Waheed Ahmed said that 375,000  tons kinnow worth of $200 million were exported last year and with introduction of new varieties of the citrus fruit coupled with increase in cultivated area of kinnow, export of the fruit can be further enhanced to $1.0 billion, Waheed added.

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