Livestock revolution enabled Pakistan to significantly raise agriculture productivity and rural incomes in 1980s. Economic activity in dairy, meat and poultry sectors now accounts for just over 50% of the nation's total agricultural output. The result is that per capita value added to agriculture in Pakistan is almost twice as much as that in Bangladesh and India.

Adding value is the process of changing or transforming a product from its original state to a more valuable state, according to Professor Mike Boland of Kansas State University. The professor explains how it applies to agriculture as follows:

"Many raw commodities have intrinsic value in their original state. For example, field corn grown, harvested and stored on a farm and then fed to livestock on that farm has value. In fact, value usually is added by feeding it to an animal, which transforms the corn into animal protein or meat. The value of a changed product is added value, such as processing wheat into flour. It is important to identify the value-added activities that will support the necessary investment in research, processing and marketing. The application of biotechnology, the engineering of food from raw products to the consumers and the restructuring of the distribution system to and from the producer all provide opportunities for adding value."

Crop Yield Comparison. Source: Kleffman Group

Although Pakistan's value added to agriculture is high for its region, it has been essentially flat since mid-1990s. It also lags significantly behind developing countries in other parts of the world. For example, per capita worker productivity in North Africa and the Middle East is more than twice that of Pakistan while in Latin America it is more than three times higher.

Agriculture Value Added Per Capita in Constant 2000 US$--Source: Wo...

There are lots of opportunities for Pakistan to reach the levels of value addition already achieved in Middle East, North Africa and Latin America.These range from building infrastructure to reduce losses to fuller utilization of animals and crops for producing valuable products.  Value addition through infrastructure development includes storage and transportation facilities for crops, dairy and meat to cut spoilage. Other opportunities to add value include better processing of  sugarcane waste, rice bran, animal hides and bones, hot treatment, grading and packaging of fruits, vegetables and fish, etc.

Agriculture Value Added Per Capita in South Asia, North Africa and ...

Pakistan's growing middle class has increased demand for dairy, meat and various branded and processed food products. Engro, Nestle, Unilever and other food giants are working with family farms and supermarket chains like Makro, Hyperstar and Metro Cash and Carry to respond to it by setting up modern supply chains.

Agriculture Value Addition in South Asia. Source: World Bank

 

Value Added Agriculture Per Worker. Source: World Bank

Growth of value added agriculture in Pakistan has helped the nation's rural economy. It has raised incomes and reduced rural poverty by creating more higher wage jobs. It has had a salutary effect on the lives of the rural poor in terms of their ability to afford better healthcare, nutrition and education. Doing more to promote value added agriculture can accelerate such improvements for the majority of Pakistanis who engage in agriculture and textiles and still live in rural areas.

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Pakistan Among Top Meat and Dairy Consuming Nations

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Views: 564

Comment by Riaz Haq on November 16, 2013 at 8:01am

Agriculture and textiles are the largest employers in both India and Pakistan.

About 60% of India's and 42% of Pakistan's labor force are engaged in agriculture, according to World Bank.

About 60% of India's workforce is in agriculture. Textile industry is the second biggest employer, accounting for a fifth of India’s exports, and employs almost 10 percent of India’s workforce, or some 35 million people, and has the potential to add another 12 million new jobs --dwarfing the 1-2 million jobs created by the much-heralded IT and BPO sector, according to a World Bank report.

Agriculture in Pakistan accounts for 19.4% of GDP and 42% of labor force, followed by services providing 53.4% of GDP and 38% employment, with the remainder 27.2% of GDP and 20% workers in manufacturing sector. Over half of Pakistan's manufacturing jobs are in the textile sector, making it the second biggest employer after agriculture.

The dire situation in India's agriculture sector has been epitomized by over 200,000 farmers' suicides in the last decade. And the rising Indian rupee is now hurting India's textile sector by making its exports more expensive in the world market.

http://www.riazhaq.com/2010/10/agriculture-andtextiles-employ-most....

Comment by Riaz Haq on November 16, 2013 at 8:19am

Here's a book review of "How Asia Works" by Amb Maleeha Lodhi published in The News:
An important new book explains why some countries have become economic tigers in East Asia while others are relative failures or paper tigers. ‘How Asia Works’ by Joe Studwell is a bold and insightful work that is essential reading for anyone interested in understanding the ingredients for economic success in this continent.
It challenges much conventional wisdom in the development debate. Most significantly the book questions key tenets of the so-called Washington consensus, which prescribes free market ‘solutions’ for all economies regardless of their level of development. Studwell establishes that a nation’s development destiny is shaped most decisively by government action and policies. History, writes the author, shows that markets are created, shaped and re-shaped by political power.
---------------
At the very outset, Studwell identifies three critical interventions that successful east-Asian countries and China (after 1978) employed to achieve accelerated economic development. The first, “often ignored”, and now “off the political agenda” in developing countries, is land reform. This restructured agriculture into highly labour-intensive household farming. In the early phase of development, with the necessary institutional support, this helped to generate a surplus, create markets and unlock great social mobility.
The second intervention, as countries cannot sustain growth only on agriculture and must transition to the next phase, is to direct entrepreneurs and investment to industrial manufacturing. Manufacturing allows for trade and technology learning. And trade, says the author, is essential for rapid economic development. Studwell then demonstrates – while challenging the champions of free trade – how nurturing and protection, along with instituting “export discipline”, builds the capacity to compete globally. Manufacturing policy is a key determinant of success he says, as an infant industry strategy offers the quickest route to restructuring the economy towards more value-added activities.
Holding that development is quintessentially a political undertaking, the author sees the relationship between the state and private entrepreneurs as a critical variable. History, he writes, teaches that governments should not run everything themselves. But governments have to use their power and the right policy tools to make private entrepreneurs do what industrial development requires.
The third intervention necessary for accelerated development is in the financial sector, aimed at directing capital initially to intensive, small scale agriculture and to manufacturing rather than services. Studwell argues persuasively that it was the close alignment of finance with agriculture and industrial policy objectives that produced north-east Asia’s economic success.
Detailing the role of financial policy, he illustrates how premature bank deregulation exacted a high price in Thailand and Indonesia. China, on the other hand, and other north-east Asian countries resisted that, instead using financial management to serve development needs and an accelerated economic learning process.

http://www.thenews.com.pk/Todays-News-9-211468-Asian-tigers-and-pap...

Comment by Riaz Haq on November 24, 2013 at 4:57pm

Here's a New Op Ed by Sayem Ali:

We are cautiously optimistic on growth outlook for 2014. Investor confidence has improved due to a smooth political transition in the May 2013 general elections and a new IMF loan to support the balance of payment position. The KSE 100 index has rallied 50 percent in 2013, as inflows from Foreign Portfolio Investors (FPI) increased to $372 million in 2013, compared to $114 million in 2012. While growth is likely to remain subdued at 3.5 percent in FY14 (ending June 2014), a stronger pickup is expected in the second half of 2014 on improved energy supply and higher private sector investment spending. In our view, growth will rise to 4.5 percent in FY15 (starting July 2014).

Growth is led by higher manufacturing sector output, which posted a strong 8.4 percent year-on-year growth in the second half of 2013, led by stronger growth in textile and leather exports. Improved energy supplies have led to higher output in the petroleum, fertiliser and food and beverages sectors. Private sector credit growth has also picked up, rising Rs82 billion during the second half of 2013, after declining by Rs20 billion in FY13. Credit growth will pick up in 2014 as government reins in large fiscal deficit under the IMF stabilisation program.

Key risks to growth arise from a deteriorating security environment, energy crisis and sharp rise in inflation. Inflation has accelerated in the second half of 2013 on cut back in energy subsidies and a weaker Pakistan rupee. Inflation has increased to 9.1 percent year-on-year in October 2013, a sharp increase after declining to 5.1 percent in May. Sharp rupee depreciation of over 8.5 percent in the second half of 2013 on widening balance of payment deficits has also fuelled inflation. We forecast CPI inflation to average 10 percent in FY14.

The biggest short-term challenge for policymakers is to avert a balance of payments crisis. Foreign exchange reserves have declined to dangerously low levels of $3.6 billion on November 13, which is equivalent to only one month of import cover. Large debt payments are looming on the horizon and a significant dollar liquidity injection is required to avert another balance of payment crisis. It will be hard for the economy to recover from another balance of payments crisis, similar to the 2008 crisis that led to the rupee depreciating 28 percent and forced the economy into a downward spiral of stagnant growth and record inflation.

Policy

The government has outlined an ambitious reform agenda under the IMF programme. The target is to reduce the fiscal deficit to 5.8 percent of GDP in FY14 from 8.8 percent in FY13. Reform agenda includes cutting back on power subsidies, implementing new tax measures and privatising public sector enterprises (PSEs). The government cut energy subsidies by 30percent for households and 50 percent for commercial users in November. A new tax on gas consumption is planned for December. The government has also shortlisted 31 state enterprises for privatisation, which will include IPOs for banks and oil and gas companies in 2014.

http://magazine.thenews.com.pk/mag/moneymatter_detail.asp?id=6641&a...

Comment by Riaz Haq on April 25, 2014 at 11:00pm

Here's a report on growth of beekeeping industry in Pakistan's Potohar region:

Battered by erratic weather patterns with decreasing and delayed rainfall, thousands of farmers in Pakistan’s northeast Potohar plateau are moving to beekeeping as an alternative source of livelihood that is less vulnerable to climate change.

A single flood, no or deficient rain in one cropping season, or lack of water in the river system due to delayed glacial melt can ruin farmers’ livelihoods. “However, training farmers in alternative climate-resilient livelihoods like beekeeping can go a long way in making farming communities resilient to climate change impacts,” said Dr. Zafar Iqbal, former chairperson of the National Disaster Management Authority, in Pakistan’s capital Islamabad.

The fact that many farmers find beekeeping a more profitable alternative and therefore reduce farming or completely shun it has its own impact on food security. But it helped many households survive in Potohar – a sprawling region between the Indus and the Jhelum rivers and stretching up to the foothills of the Himalayas. Around 70 per cent of rain in the region is received between July and August.

“Because of erratic weather patterns and unreliable crop harvests, our income had become irregular and was declining. But the beehives give us regular income,” said Hakim Khan, a beekeeper in Ghool village of Chakwal district, about 90 kilometres southeast of Islamabad.

The district — one of the four in Potohar along with Attock, Rawalpindi and Jhelum – is known for its exportable quality of groundnuts and stretches over 6,500 square kilometres of semi-arid terrain. It has a population of nearly 1.5 million and relies entirely on the rains for cultivation of crops.

It was known as an area for abundant rain. However, the situation has changed over the years. Until 1998, it would receive around 1,200 millometres rainfall annually. This has come down to less than 900 millometres, according to the Pakistan Meteorological Department.
----------
In this scenario, beekeeping has been a saviour for many families in the area. Hakim Khan from Ghool, for instance, survived the poor harvest by taking to beekeeping. He also continues to grow groundnut.

“The additional income from beekeeping has helped me survive crop losses. I adopted beekeeping three years ago to cover up income losses from the groundnut crop,” Khan said while examining the wooden bee boxes on a plot adjacent to his groundnut field.

He was amongst the lucky ones trained in beekeeping — producing honey, hives and wax — by the Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund (PPAF) under the Drought Mitigation and Preparedness Project. Farmers in various villages of Chakwal district have also been provided with financial aid.

In a ripple effect, Khan has taught other farmers about beekeeping and its benefits. “I learnt about the economic benefits of less labour and investment (in beekeeping)… Now, more and more farmers are approaching to me to learn about beekeeping,” he told thethirdpole.net.

Citing an example, he said a groundnut farmer-turned-beekeeper who purchased 10 wooden boxes of hives for Pakistani Rs.34,000 (about US$347) three years ago now has 90 boxes worth Pakistani Rs.1,020,000 (about US$10,400).

http://www.eco-business.com/news/pakistans-farmers-counter-climate-...

Comment by Riaz Haq on December 1, 2014 at 2:17pm

Five farmers took their lives in Maharashtra in the three days to Monday.

The wave of farmer suicides in the rain-shadow regions of Marathwada and Vidarbha continues unabated despite the new Bharatiya Janata Party government announcing relief measures to combat the agricultural crisis affecting more than 19,000 villages in the State.

Three consecutive years of drought and unseasonable rain have broken the spirit of farmers.

Reports say changing weather patterns, mounting indebtedness and poor crop yield are driving farmers to suicide.

Tulsidas Madalwad, a minor farmer, electrocuted himself at Kakandi village in Nanded district unable to pay off the debts accumulated over multiple bad harvests on his two-acre farm. “He returned from his field and electrocuted himself by stringing wires to his feet around 10 a.m. When his wife and little daughter came with food, they found him charred to death,” a villager said.

Madalwad was devastated by the destruction of his soya bean crop and was worried about repaying more than Rs. 1 lakh to banks and local moneylenders, the people said.

In the neighbouring Latur district, Sangram Bemde, 46, another marginal farmer, immolated himself on Monday after his cotton crop failed for the third consecutive year, traumatising his family and relatives.

Kashiram Indore, 76, built a pyre and jumped into it on Friday following the poor soya bean yield from his one-acre farm at Manarkhed in Akola. Indore was despondent as just a quintal and a half of soya bean could be harvested this year.

The Javadekar family of Javda in Buldhana is facing the grimmest winter after their only son, Shivshankar, 24, hanged himself on Saturday evening as he could not repay the Rs. 60,000 loan his family took after their two-acre farm faced consecutive years of drought.

Family members said Shivshankar was aspiring to pursue higher education. Another farmer too committed suicide in the district.

http://m.thehindu.com/news/national/120-farmers-killed-themselves-i...

Comment by Riaz Haq on October 28, 2015 at 8:16pm

University of #California #Davis, #Pakistan launch $17M food,agriculture Center For Advanced Studies at #Faisalabad 

http://www.davisenterprise.com/local-news/ucd/ucd-pakistan-launch-1...


The launch of a $17 million collaborative project linking UC Davis and Pakistan’s leading agricultural university was celebrated today at UCD, which will receive $10 million of the funds.

The new U.S.-Pakistan Center for Advanced Studies in Agriculture and Food Security, funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development, will make it possible for faculty members and graduate students from both countries to study and do research at each other’s campuses. The project also is designed to update curriculum and technical resources at Pakistan’s University of Agriculture, Faisalabad.

Present for today’s ceremonial launch were dignitaries from Pakistan, USAID and UCD.

“UC Davis has been partnering with colleagues in Pakistan since 2009, sharing expertise in agriculture from crop production to post-harvest handling,” said James Hill, associate dean emeritus of International Programs for the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at UCD.

“Establishment of this new center will allow us to build on those efforts, with a renewed emphasis on an exchange of faculty and graduate students,” he said.

During its first year of funding, the center will plan several workshops to assist the University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, with technology transfer and entrepreneurship to strengthen its connections to the private sector. UCD also will initiate programs in both research and curriculum development to improve graduate studies.

Hill noted that two other Pakistan-focused projects are already underway through the International Programs office, primarily in the area of horticultural crops and agricultural extension activities.

Agriculture is the largest sector of Pakistan’s economy, providing jobs for half of that country’s labor force. Some of the traditionally important crops in Pakistan are wheat, cotton, rice, sugar cane and maize. In recent years, crops like beans, peas, lentils, onions, potatoes, chilies and tomatoes also have increased in importance, along with fruit crops such as citrus and mangoes.


The newly funded center at UCD is the most recent of several partnerships of the U.S.-Pakistan Centers for Advanced Studies, a $127 million investment from USAID, linking universities in the two countries and using applied research to solve Pakistan’s challenges in energy, water and food security.

The overall program includes construction of laboratories, research facilities and libraries in Pakistan. Other participating U.S. universities include the University of Utah and Arizona State University, focusing on water and energy, respectively.

Comment by Riaz Haq on February 11, 2016 at 9:45pm

#MIT and #Harvard Graduates Helping #Pakistan Farmers Make Big Money! http://pixr8.com/ricult/ 

Ricult is an endeavor by a US-based start-up founded by 4 MIT and 1 Harvard graduates. They help smallholder farmers (< 10 acres holding) reduce information asymmetry and work their way out of poverty to become more impactful economic actors. At the heart of their concept is a virtual marketplace which allows farmers to procure agriculture inputs (seed, fertilizers, pesticides etc.), access interest-free/low interest based loans transparently and sell their produce directly to buyers (processing plants, corporate organizations etc.) directly from the Ricult marketplace.



Founders

Usman Javaid, (CEO) is an MIT alumnus with 15 years of experience in Telecom, Mobile Banking, Mobile Agriculture in Pakistan and Bangladesh. Jonathan Stoller, the CTO pursued his Masters in Computer Science from MIT and worked for 4 years with Google, Microsoft, Dow Jones. Aukrit Unahalekhaka handles the product at Ricult is also an MIT alumnus belongs to a family of farmers in Thailand. He worked with Accenture & Cisco in the US before taking the entrepreneurial plunge. Philip Huppe who takes care of Social Development is a Harvard alumnus. He worked with World Relief, Palo Alto Networks, and Accenture before joining hands with MIT alumni to start-up!



PROCESS STORY:

Their first pilot for 400 farmers is underway in Kasur area of Pakistan, where they have signed up leading agriculture organizations to supply products on the Ricult Marketplace. “The idea is to validate certain hypotheses regarding technology adoption, impact on farm profitability, technology sustainability and the reaction of local middlemen. Based on the results of the pilot, we plan to commercially launch in Pakistan, followed by China, Thailand, and Slovenia,” says the Harvard graduate.

The marketplace connects farmers to farm input sellers; farm produce buyers, bank creditors, insurers, vetinary services, farm advisory services and everything that can help them have better farming results. “But this is not just a marketplace for farmers. We believe in building strong relationships with our local farmers and ensuring that they have easy access to bigger markets, quality products, enhanced profitability and hence a better future,” says Usman.
We asked the founders if they doubted what they were doing, and they said, “Oh yes, many times you have doubts about what you are doing. Entrepreneurship is a roller coaster of emotions – it’s not for the weak hearted nor is it for the people who are impatient for results. You have to bide your time, one step at a time and take each day as it comes.”

All the co-founders started up with a passion for solving difficult social problems through the use of technology. “This is how all of us came together and this is what binds us as a team. We like solving hard but real problems that would make the world a better place,” says Usman. They are partnering with various multinational and local organizations to facilitate the growth of Ricult. Currently a team of 10 people, the start-up is not funded.

As a message for future entrepreneurs, Jonathan says, “Live your passion and your dreams. Be focused and consistent, and you will reach your destination.”

Comment by Riaz Haq on November 19, 2016 at 10:16am

PARC approves 16 projects worth Rs1.2bn
http://www.dawn.com/news/1296963/parc-approves-16-projects-worth-rs...

The Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) has approved 16 research projects with a total budget of Rs1.2 billion for 2016-17.

In addition, the PARC board of governors approved Rs194 million for projects under international cooperation and Rs183m for Agriculture Linkage Programme (ALP).

Talking to Dawn on Thursday, National Agricultural Research Centre (NARC) Director General, Dr Mohammad Azeem Khan said a hybrid seed processing plant will be set up at the NARC with a view to provide clean, treated and high quality seeds to farmers.

He said agricultural research facilities are now being extended to tribal agencies, particularly Waziristan.

The Arid Zone Research Institute in Dera Ismail Khan will also be expanded at the same time, he said.

Under a project, pesticides residue analysis laboratories will be set up in all parts of the country. These laboratories will cover food chains, health, and environment and production technology with a view to pursue international standards.

According to Dr Azeem, three projects will be set up in Balochistan covering horticulture and livestock.

The NARC is also developing a mechanism for the establishment of demonstration units of yogurt under public-private partnership (PPP).

The PARC has recently recommended 14 rice hybrids for different ecologies, two wheat varieties: ‘Borlaug 2016’ and ‘Zincol 2016’, two sugarcane varieties: ‘Thatta 2109’ and ‘Thatta 326’, working on commercialisation of genetically modified (GM) crops, and bioremediation on 86 sites full scale wastewater treatment facilities through Pakistan.

The performance of various PARC projects — including mobile veterinary clinic services, feed technology unit, high eggs and meat producing chicks, ostrich breeding facilities, American channel catfish hatchery at NARC, Tilapia hatchery and aqua feed production to promote intensive fish culture in the country — was also reviewed by the board of governors at a meeting.

Comment by Riaz Haq on March 5, 2017 at 9:49am

#Rice Bran Oil, high in healthy fats, and Economic Diplomacy in #Pakistan, #India, #SouthAsia http://on.natgeo.com/2mTOjvC via @NatGeo

Across super markets worldwide, a new product is showing up rather unobtrusively called “rice bran oil” (RBO). For the healthy shopper, the labeling on the product will usually reveal its health benefits in terms high omega fatty acids which promote cardiovascular stability. The origins of this new product can be traced back to Asia as well but not any particular traditional diet but to a salubrious confluence of resource economics and chemical engineering. The diminutive rice grain has multiple layers. The outer layer is referred to as the hull and is often discarded for animal feed. There is also an inner layer of bran, which is only 8% of the weight of the grain capsule but contains over 75% of the oil content. Over the past three decades, Indian and Chinese scientists have developed complex chemical engineering processes to extract this oil in edible form.

India can claim ascendancy in developing rice bran oil as a commercially viable alternative to other high temperature oils from soybeans, cottonseeds and peanuts. The country is now the world’s largest producer and the Indian rice bran oil market size was valued over $600 million in 2014. This market is likely to continue growth as the country has 1.4 million tons of RBO production potential of which only around 900 kilotons is currently produced. In 2015, Government of India lifted ban on RBO exports, thus opening the way for major international competition for world markets.

The rice bran industry in India has added considerable value to the most ubiquitous of agricultural products but the other major rice producer of South Asia – Pakistan (the world’s fourth largest producer of rice) – has not been a beneficiary of this new growth opportunity. Enter, Abid Butt, a self-made serial entrepreneur from Karachi and a World Economic Forum “Young Global Leader.” When Abid saw the rise of RBO products on his grocery store shelves, he saw an opportunity for growth in this sector for Pakistan. Moving from his usual comfort zone of logistics supply chain commerce, he took the plunge in developing Pakistan’s first rice bran oil extraction plant.

Soon, Abid was on a steep learning curve in complex solvent extraction technologies and industrial catalysts that are needed to extract the precious oil from the thin layer of rice bran that coats the kernel of the grain. The complexity of the process was daunting but the nearest supplier of the equipment was of course in neighboring India. The only challenge was that the lack of trust between India and Pakistan at the political level made technology transfer between the two countries highly contentious. Yet, Abid was not deterred by the saber-rattling that warrior hawks from both countries frequently display. He managed to work through a business visa process to get Indian engineers to Lahore over a period of several months to literally build the RBO plant in Pakistan on a fair contract for the Indian suppliers.

Earlier this year, I had a chance to visit the facility an hour’s drive from Lahore, near Muridke, which is in the heart of northern Punjab’s rice growing district. The facility stands as a beacon of hope for economic diplomacy between these two acrimonious nuclear powers. If commercializable chemical engineering technology can be shared and developed between the two countries, there are clearly many other opportunities for knowledge-sharing that can bring mutual benefit. All we need is a willingness to see creative synergies of cooperation rather than constant fear-mongering of competition and discord.

Comment by Riaz Haq on May 14, 2017 at 10:11pm

Exclusive: CPEC master plan revealed

https://www.dawn.com/news/1333101

For agriculture, the plan outlines an engagement that runs from one end of the supply chain all the way to the other. From provisioning of seeds and other inputs, like fertilizer, credit, and pesticides, Chinese enterprises will also operate their own farms, processing facilities for fruits and vegetables and grain. Logistics companies will operate a large storage and transportation system for agrarian produce.

It identifies opportunities for entry by Chinese enterprises in the myriad dysfunctions that afflict Pakistan’s agriculture sector. For instance, “due to lack of cold-chain logistics and processing facilities, 50% of agricultural products go bad during harvesting and transport” it notes.

A full system of monitoring and surveillance will be built in cities from Peshawar to Karachi, with 24 hour video recordings on roads and busy marketplaces for law and order.

Enterprises entering agriculture will be offered extraordinary levels of assistance from the Chinese government. They are encouraged to “[m]ake the most of the free capital and loans” from various ministries of the Chinese government as well as the China Development Bank. The plan also offers to maintain a mechanism that will “help Chinese agricultural enterprises to contact the senior representatives of the Government of Pakistan and China”.

The government of China will “actively strive to utilize the national special funds as the discount interest for the loans of agricultural foreign investment”. In the longer term the financial risk will be spread out, through “new types of financing such as consortium loans, joint private equity and joint debt issuance, raise funds via multiple channels and decentralise financing risks”.

— Reuters photo

The plan proposes to harness the work of the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps to bring mechanization as well as scientific technique in livestock breeding, development of hybrid varieties and precision irrigation to Pakistan. It sees its main opportunity as helping the Kashgar Prefecture, a territory within the larger Xinjiang Autonomous Zone, which suffers from a poverty incidence of 50 per cent, and large distances that make it difficult to connect to larger markets in order to promote development. The prefecture’s total output in agriculture, forestry, animal husbandry and fishery amounted to just over $5 billion in 2012, and its population was less than 4 million in 2010, hardly a market with windfall gains for Pakistan.

However, for the Chinese, this is the main driving force behind investing in Pakistan’s agriculture, in addition to the many profitable opportunities that can open up for their enterprises from operating in the local market. The plan makes some reference to export of agriculture goods from the ports, but the bulk of its emphasis is focused on the opportunities for the Kashgar Prefecture and Xinjiang Production Corps, coupled with the opportunities for profitable engagement in the domestic market.

The plan discusses those engagements in considerable detail. Ten key areas for engagement are identified along with seventeen specific projects. They include the construction of one NPK fertilizer plant as a starting point “with an annual output of 800,000 tons”. Enterprises will be inducted to lease farm implements, like tractors, “efficient plant protection machinery, efficient energy saving pump equipment, precision fertilization drip irrigation equipment” and planting and harvesting machinery.

The plan shows great interest in the textiles industry in particular, but the interest is focused largely on yarn and coarse cloth.

Meat processing plants in Sukkur are planned with annual output of 200,000 tons per year, and two demonstration plants processing 200,000 tons of milk per year. In crops, demonstration projects of more than 6,500 acres will be set up for high yield seeds and irrigation, mostly in Punjab. In transport and storage, the plan aims to build “a nationwide logistics network, and enlarge the warehousing and distribution network between major cities of Pakistan” with a focus on grains, vegetables and fruits. Storage bases will be built first in Islamabad and Gwadar in the first phase, then Karachi, Lahore and another in Gwadar in the second phase, and between 2026-2030, Karachi, Lahore and Peshawar will each see another storage base.

Asadabad, Islamabad, Lahore and Gwadar will see a vegetable processing plant, with annual output of 20,000 tons, fruit juice and jam plant of 10,000 tons and grain processing of 1 million tons. A cotton processing plant is also planned initially, with output of 100,000 tons per year.

“We will impart advanced planting and breeding techniques to peasant households or farmers by means of land acquisition by the government, renting to China-invested enterprises and building planting and breeding bases” it says about the plan to source superior seeds.

In each field, Chinese enterprises will play the lead role. “China-invested enterprises will establish factories to produce fertilizers, pesticides, vaccines and feedstuffs” it says about the production of agricultural materials.

“China-invested enterprises will, in the form of joint ventures, shareholding or acquisition, cooperate with local enterprises of Pakistan to build a three-level warehousing system (purchase & storage warehouse, transit warehouse and port warehouse)” it says about warehousing.

One of the most intriguing chapters in the plan speaks of a long belt of coastal enjoyment industry that includes yacht wharfs, cruise homeports, nightlife, city parks, public squares, theaters, golf courses and spas, hot spring hotels and water sports.

Then it talks about trade. “We will actively embark on cultivating surrounding countries in order to improve import and export potential of Pakistani agricultural products and accelerate the trade of agricultural products. In the early stages, we will gradually create a favorable industry image and reputation for Pakistan by relying on domestic demand.”

In places the plan appears to be addressing investors in China. It says Chinese enterprises should seek “coordinated cooperation with Pakistani enterprises” and “maintain orderly competition and mutual coordination.” It advises them to make an effort “seeking for powerful strategic partners for bundling interest in Pakistan.”

As security measures, enterprises will be advised “to respect the religions and customs of the local people, treat people as equals and live in harmony”. They will also be advised to “increase local employment and contribute to local society by means of subcontracting and consortiums.” In the final sentence of the chapter on agriculture, the plan says the government of China will “[s]trengthen the safety cooperation with key countries, regions and international organizations, jointly prevent and crack down on terrorist acts that endanger the safety of Chinese overseas enterprises and their staff.”


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