ISLAMABAD: Punjab exceeded the cotton sowing target for 2018-19 with 2.31 million hectares against 2.29m hectares, the Senate Standing Committee on National Food Security and Research was informed on Wednesday.
The committee, chaired by Senator Syed Muzaffar Hussain Shah, was informed that Sindh failed to achieve the target since sowing was carried out on 0.42m hectares against the target of 0.62m hectares.
Overall area under cotton sowing was 2.71m hectares against the target of 2.95m hectares.
The target in Punjab witnessed a positive trend with an increase of 11.5 per cent while Sindh was down 31pc.
The standing committee decided to call chairman Indus River System Authority at its next meeting for an update on the availability of water for Rabi season.
The committee was also briefed about wheat exports over the years. The allocation of wheat export for 2017-18 was estimated at 2500,000 tonnes while 1,761,870 tonnes of wheat was exported.
The committee members insisted on actual details of wheat and wheat products exports.
The standing committee directed the Ministry of National Food Security to hold consultative sessions with all concerned stakeholders and submit a report on inviting international seed companies for hybrid seed production technology to Pakistan following the enforcement of Plant Breeders Rights Act.
The committee expressed its concern over the continuous absence of Chairman Pakistan Agriculture Research Council (PARC) Dr Yousuf Zafar from the standing committee meetings. The committee also sought information about foreign visits of the PARC chairman.
(This news/article originally appeared in DAWN on August 30th , 2018)