Investment on farmers to increase GDP growth, says FPCCI
Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) on Monday highlighted the need for enhancing budgetary allocations in the agriculture sector with an ultimate goal to boost the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth.
"Farmers were an engine of growth for the agro-based economies like us and those countries who invested on their farmers they actually invested for its own to increase the GDP growth," Regional Standing Committee Chairman of FPCCI Ahmad Jawad said. Jawad said government may increase the budget allocation in the coming budget 2016-17 so that we may stable the GDP growth, said a press release. He however floated following budget proposals for the government through Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Revenue Haroon Akthar in a group meeting at FBR House. He said the Government may formulate Horticulture Export Policy in consultation with stakeholders on the pattern similar to the Textile Policy. He said Government should make budget allocation for promoting Hybrid Seed Industry in Pakistan in publicprivate partnership (PPP) mode and food processing and value addition industry such as fruit pulp and concentrate extraction as common facility centers in PPP mode.
Agro-processing industry in PPP mode such as Fruit Dehydration and Individual Quick Freeze. This will help in reducing post harvest losses and increasing horticultural exports. Establishment of cool chain infrastructure for the horticulture sector in PPP mode which is vital for reducing post-harvest losses, increasing shelf-life of the produce and enhancing exports. Establishment of accredited common facility centers in PPP mode for compliance of international food safety standards in the fruit producing hubs. This is vital for enhancing horticultural exports especially to take advantage of Pakistan's GSP Plus Status. Establishment of accredited testing laboratories at horticulture production hubs to ensure good quality produce availability for exports. International accreditation of existing food safety compliance centers such as ( 1) PARAS Foods (Pvt.) Limited Lahore; and ( 2) Pakistan Hortifresh (Pvt.) Ltd which runs under Pakistan Horticulture Development and Export Company (PHDEC).
Government should identify new export markets and sign protocols and agreements to remove bottlenecks for enhancing exports of agriculture and its allied sectors.