Islamabad: National Food Security and Research Minister Syed Fakhar Imam, during a meeting with the Chinese Ambassador Yao Jing on Thursday, remarked that both countries needed to revisit the existing conditions of their respective agricultural sectors, and that experts from both sides should consider collaborating to devise new agriculture research initiatives, according to news sources.
Minister Imam said that Pakistan’s future depended on agriculture, which is why Prime Minister Imran Khan was very keen to see its revival. He revealed that Pakistan was producing lower yields and that this problem could be rectified through an exchange of germplasm. He added that this collaboration would help develop high-yielding varieties of cotton, hybrid rice, fruits and wheat.
Additionally, the minister further stressed on a collaboration with China in the meat and meat products sector, as China has one of the world largest meat export markets. However, Pakistan does not have access to these markets, due to the prevalence of the foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) in local livestock.
He also revealed that China recently agreed to help Pakistan in the installation of a phytosanitary system aimed at increasing local fruit exports. He added that China would also be establishing vocational and training institutes in Pakistan in order to educate local farmers on various agricultural practices.
Meanwhile, the Chinese ambassador took the opportunity to express an interest in cooperating on developing Gwadar’s fishery sector.