China to install phytosanitary facilities in Pakistan

ISLAMABAD: China will help in installing phytosanitary facilities in Pakistan, besides it will help in building vocational and technical agriculture institutions for training farmers and other people.

The decision to this effect was taken in a meeting between Minister for National Food Security and Research Syed Fakhar Imam and Ambassador of China Yao Jing.

Speaking on the occasion, Syed Fakhar Imam mentioned that Prime Minister Imran Khan was very much interested in revival of agriculture.

He said both countries need to revisit the contours of agricultural sector, adding technical experts from two sides should directly interact with each other to come up with concrete projects or agricultural research.

The minister said Pakistan is facing problem of low yield, adding there must be exchange of germplasm as an area of cooperation which will provide an opportunity to develop high yielding varieties for cotton, fruit, hybrid rice and wheat by our research centers.

Syed Fakhar Imam said China is one of largest markets in the world for export of meat and meat products, adding Pakistan has no access to Chinese market due to the issue of FMD. So collaboration can be done in this regard, he said, adding Balochistan is excelling in producing organic cotton.

It was decided that China will help in installing phytosanitary system for increasing fruit export and it was also decided that China will help in building vocational and technical agriculture institutions for training farmers and other people.

He added that now Plant Breeders Act and Plant Seed Act will give a window for branding our products.

Chinese Ambassador also showed interest in mutual cooperation in fishery at Gwadar.

It may be recalled that China-Pakistan JWG on Agricultural Cooperation was established in pursuance of the MoU (signed on 02.11.2018) and Framework Agreement (signed on 26.05.2019).

First Meeting of JWG was held on November 01, 2019 in Islamabad.

Chinese side has provided in-kind donation of locust control equipment to the tune of around Rs4.94 million to Pakistan including 300,000 liters of Malathyun (pesticide) and 50 sprayer equipment.

Another request for provision of 200 drones worth USD 2.6 million is under process with Economic Affairs Division. Chinese side has also graciously donated medical equipment including 30,000 surgical masks, 1000 protective suits and 1000 protective goggles for continuation of locust control activities during corona virus pandemic.

Chinese side is also donating USD100,000 in cash to support locust control activities.

An memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed in March, 2020 between Pakistan and China during the visit of the president of Pakistan to China.

The MoU is aimed at establishing a Joint Plan Pest and Disease Control Centre in Pakistan. Establishment of this Centre is extremely important as there is no such centre in Pakistan. - APP