Agricultural sector indispensable for economic growth: Tasneem Qureshi

ISLAMABAD:Minister of State for Industries and Production Tasneem Ahmed Qureshi on Friday said that all possible steps were being taken to enable rural development-driven economic growth by enhancing financial inclusion in the agriculture sector to boost productivity and exports.

He expressed these views while addressing a closing ceremony of a five-day international training course on Productivity Gains-sharing in Agribusiness Enterprises.

The event was jointly organized by National Productivity Organization (NPO) and Asian Productivity Organization (APO) Tokyo, Japan.

Tasneem Ahmed said the government is committed to support the agriculture sector and believed that initiatives and platforms which connect such international practices can drive further development of the sector.

He was of the view that the agriculture sector was indispensable for the country’s economic growth, food security, employment generation and poverty alleviation particularly, at the rural level.

The government is closely monitoring key crops, devising policies and planning interventions to ensure un-interrupted supply of basic food items at affordable prices in the country, he added.

The minister said that he was looking forward to enhanced productivity of agriculture sector based on mutual learning and showing the rest of the world that how APO member countries can work together for innovation and development agricultural sector.

He lauded the efforts of the organizers for hosting a successful event which got attention of the APO member countries.

Chief Executive Officer NPO, Muhammad Alamgir Chaudhry tanked the APO for providing an opportunity to bring the experts from 10 different countries to Pakistan which provided an opportunity to interact with people having diverse knowledge and expertise. The program has been proactive to grip with the important topic of productivity gain-sharing in agribusiness enterprises, he expressed.

He hoped that the participants have gained better understanding about the application of gain-sharing tools and techniques to make agribusiness more productive and profitable. Alamgir Chaudhry said that as per his opinion, most of the countries have huge potential but were unable to capitalize it to their full capacity.

He highlighted that Pakistan was an agro-based economy and had very good agricultural crops including wheat and cotton. In fruits, we are the largest producers of mangoes, he said and added, the objective of organizing this program is to ensure participation from different countries and healthy sharing of knowledge.

Head of APO, Tadahisa Manabe also addressed on the occasion.

The APO, established on May 11, 1961, is a union of 21 Asian countries with headquarters in Tokyo working for the promotion of socio-economic development in the region and among member countries.

The members of APO include Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Fiji, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Iran, Japan, The Republic of Korea, Laos, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, The Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Turkey and Vietnam.