Agriculture faces danger as water scarcity looms large

April 17, 2014

FAISALABAD-Pakistan agriculture production may face severe setback in the years to come as the threat of water scarcity looms large, however, the promotion of cost-effective irrigation system and water storage capacity at the farm level could help fight the challenge.

This was suggested at a seminar titled “Reimaging Cost Recovery in Pakistan’s Indus Basin Irrigation System” arranged by Institute of Agri and Resource Economics, University of Agriculture Faisalabad. The session was chaired by UAF Vice Chancellor Dr Iqrar Ahmad while Dr Andrew Bell, Research Fellow, IFPRI, USA was the guest of honor.

Dr Andrew Bell said that Pakistan has one of the largest gravity-fed irrigation system in the world. He said that the country lacks resources and low cost recovery. He said that surface water is more reliable and according to a survey in Punjab, a large number of farmers consider surface water more appropriate. He also coined the idea of developing a scale-able irrigation system with the consent of farming community so that the rational usage of water can be ensured for the irrigation purpose. He said that pumping of groundwater for irrigation is causing the salinity in the land. The UAF vice chancellor said it is prerequisite for making efficient use of natural as per modern trend by adopting latest techniques. He said that glaciers were melting drastically due to climate changes and after fifty years, the country would be left with the limited glaciers if tangible steps were not taken. “Keeping the issue in view, we have to save water for the coming generation,” he said. He also stressed a need for avoiding the food irrigation. He said excessive pumping of groundwater is also posing threat in term of groundwater availability. He said per capita water availability is only 1,000 cubic mete In Pakistan.

Institute Director Dr Muhammad Ashfaq said that the country population was increasing. We have to use the natural resources rationally in order to provide the better future for the coming generation, he said.

WORKSHOP ON GSP PLUS: The Trade Development Authority of Pakistan organised a two-day CBI workshop which was attended by the representatives of different companies.

The GSP Plus status given by the European Union to Pakistan was discussed at the workshop. TDAP Faisalabad Director Allah Dad Tarar made the welcome address.

CBI Expert Marcel Oosterveer and Ms Josephine Koopman Garment shared their thoughts in perspective of enhancing exports sector of Pakistan and elaborated reasons for the promotion of exports of Pakistan. Mr Marcel Oosterveer highlighted the importance of GSP Plus in the perspective of Pakistani industry while Ms Koopman made an introduction to the EU (Apparel) market. The objective of the training workshop was to enhance knowledge of the Pakistani entrepreneurs on GSP + and about the requirements of potentials to the European buyers. The experts also apprised the participants about the export possibilities and success rate of Pakistani companies in the European markets.

The experts also presented comparison of the EU consumer market with China, USA and Pakistan and dilated on the fashion industry of France and Germany. SRO Director Madam Roubina Taufiq appreciated the efforts of CBI in the workshop.

Courtesy NATION

Pakistan agriculture production…

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