PR: The Centre for Global & Strategic Studies (CGSS) arranged a seminar on “Agricultural Developments in 21st Century” at PARC HQs, Islamabad. The event brought together government representatives, armed forces officers, diplomats and students from across the country and individuals from public and private entities.
Dr. Yusuf Zafar – Chairman, Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) in his keynote address on the respective topic, extensively highlighted the current status of Pakistan’s agricultural industry, its challenges and presented an extensive way-forward for the improvement of agricultural goals. He also explained that government policies which have been insufficient for the agricultural industry, therefore, government has to pay attention towards this sector to undermine the mountain challenges to the back-bone of Pakistan’s economy.
The guest speakers included Dr. Muhammad Ashraf – Chairman Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources (PCRWR) Mr. Mumtaz Khan Manais – Former Provincial Agriculture Minister Dr. Irfan Baig – Dean Faculty of Social Sciences & Humanities, Muhammad Nawaz Sharif University of Agriculture, Multan Dr. Yusuf Zafar – Chairman Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) Mr. Malik Zahoor Ahmed – Senior Advisor Ministry of National Food Security and Research (M NFSR. Major General Syed Khalid Amir Jaffery HI(M), (Retd) – President CGSS also delivered talk on this occasion.
The aim and focus of the seminar was to analyse in detail the Agriculture developments in 21st Century and current agricultural status of Pakistan. The seminar extensively highlighted the contributions in Pakistan’s economy and also enlightened the audience about the different challenges and issues to the agricultural industry of Pakistan.
Major General Syed Khalid Amir Jaffery HI(M), (Retd) – President CGSS in his opening remarks stated that Pakistan’s agriculture is the back-bone of its Economy and however, the current challenges have reduced the important contributions of agricultural sector therefore, there is a dire need to address the problems and challenges of agricultural industry to boost the economy of Pakistan.
Dr. Muhammad Ashraf – Chairman Pakistan Council of Research in Water Resources (PCRWR) highlighted the importance of water resources in agriculture sector of Pakistan. He further explained that although Pakistan has world’s largest irrigational system but currently this system is facing different challenges. In addition, due to lack of water management Pakistan is unable to provide the adequate irrigational water for crops cultivation to meet up the domestic needs as well as its exports. He urged to establish a broader mechanism regarding water management through building large and small dams.
Mr. Mumtaz Khan Manais – Former Provincial Agriculture Minister talked about the modernization in agriculture in his address, he highlighted the constraints and issues in agricultural methods of Pakistan. He was of the view that Pakistani farmers are having inadequate resources and equipment to meet the global agricultural standards. Therefore, the process of modern mechanization in agricultural industry through introducing modern technology and agricultural machinery can enhance growth potential of Pakistan in agricultural sector.
Dr. Irfan Baig – Dean Faculty of Social Sciences & Humanities, Muhammad Nawaz Sharif University of Agriculture, Multan in his address highlighted the role of academia in bringing change in agriculture sector. He explained that education plays a significant role in the development of any country. However, In Pakistan, the role of academia in agricultural development is very limited. Furthermore, all the nations have created strong link between the education and there development goals. Therefore, Pakistan also needs to broaden its horizon of bringing basic reforms in agricultural industry through increasing the role of academia in agriculture industry.
The last speaker of event Mr. Malik Zahoor Ahmed – Senior Advisor Ministry of National Food Security and Research (M NFSR) talked about agricultural development and national security. In his speech, he mentioned that although Pakistan considers its agricultural industry as its back-bone but unfortunately, due to limited approach this industry has suffered immensely. If this condition propelled further, it would cause immense challenges to Pakistan in aspect of food management for the general masses.
About 140 people including the senior members of CGSS Advisory Board, government representatives, armed forces officers, diplomats and students attended the Seminar.