President of the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) Zubair Tufail on Wednesday said agricultural trade has gained importance in these times offering new opportunities and challenges.
He said that Pakistan is also doing a lot to improve agriculture while CPEC has opened our agricultural sector to Chinese businessmen and other foreign investors promising them higher returns, he said.
Zubair Tufail said this while speaking at WTO programme titled, “Agricultural Trade in New Era” at Geneva and while talking to delegates representing many countries.
He said that the expansion of agricultural trade on a global level has helped provide greater quantity, wider variety and better quality food to increasing numbers of people at lower prices.
It is generating income for billions of people globally who are directly or indirectly linked to it while Pakistan’s sixty percent exports are linked to this sector, he added.
The FPCCI president said that agriculture is set to become an important source of the foreign exchange for Pakistan necessary to finance imports and development and it will ensure domestic food security.
He said that hunger can be eliminated from the world if agricultural policies of some major agriculture producing countries are not influenced by local or national considerations but global interests which is necessary to control widespread distortions in world agricultural markets.
Many countries believe that agriculture should not be exposed to international competition due to its vulnerability and political, social and economic consequences which result in protectionism, he said.
World moving slowly towards agri trade liberalization for which domestic support must be reduced by all the countries in a systematic manner, he said.
He suggested that that farmers must be given cheap loans and subsidies for purchasing fertilizers, pesticides and other inputs.
Commerce Minister Pervez Malik, Ambassador Dr. Shah and other Pakistani officials were also present on the occasion who lauded the speech of the president of the Apex chamber and his answers to the questions raised by the participants in the forum.