ISLAMABAD: Despite being an agricultural country, Pakistan could not reap agriculture gains up to the potential and government should focus on development of agro-industries to enhance the export of processed food products.
This was stated by Mahfooz Elahi, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ICCI) while chairing a meeting of ICCI Sub Committee on Food Exports.
He said Pakistan has mostly been exporting raw crops while it could achieve much better results by promoting the export of processed food products such as fruits, vegetables, sea food and some other agro-based industries.
He said that Pakistani processed food products have great potential to earn a major chunk of foreign exchange as some countries were vastly relying on imported edibles. Pakistan has great scope of enhancing exports of edibles to many other Gulf countries by developing its agro-industries.
ICCI President said that government should help farmers in modernizing and improving the areas of production, grain growing and harvesting techniques. He said that government should also focus on effective development and promotion of the special economic zones and export processing zones.
Mahfooz Elahi said that demand of organic food was increasing worldwide, therefore, Pakistan could fetch a good market giving more attention to organic agriculture.
Agriculture experts must be invited to find ways and means for increasing per yield production and developing new varieties for fruits and vegetables. Also farmers must be educated on growing techniques to get optimum production, he suggested.