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Provincial govts asked to ensure farmer’s profitability while proposing support price of wheat

ISLAMABAD, Aug 26 (APP): Minister for National Food Security and Research Tariq Bashir Cheema on Friday called upon the provincial governments to ensure proper rate of returns to wheat growers while preparing the proposal to fix minimum supports price of the commodity for coming season (2022-23).

In this regard, the minister chaired a meeting to consult provincial authorities, where as Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet will take final decision on the matter after proposals received from the provinces to the Ministry of National Food Security and Research.

Cheema was of the view that productivity of wheat could be improved by ensuring proper rate of returns to farmers for their produces, besides making the commodity production as an profit oriented. He said that import of wheat for building strategic reserves was putting unnecessary burden on foreign exchange, adding that to reduce the pressure on foreign exchange, it was direly required to enhance per-acre output and bring more area under grain cultivation.

The minister said that appropriate price of the commodity would provide relief to the farmers and help them recover their losses, which accured due to recent rains and flash floods, adding that it would also help in maintaining food safety and security in the country.

On the occasion, Tariq Bashir Cheema also expressed his deep grief and sorrow over the loss of precious lives due to recent rains and floods, which also destroyed standing crops over million of hectares and livestock of the farmers of these areas.
He assured the full support of the government to farmers and all other peoples of flood effected areas and said that the Ministry of National Food Security and Research will take special measures to provide them relief.

The meeting was apprised that approximately $1 billion of import bill could be curtailed by ensuring the profitability wheat crop, besides announcing minimum support price well before the sowing season.

The meeting also noted that due to devastating flash floods in the country, the cost of land preparation for next season would escalate that would put more financial burden on wheat growers and announcement of support price would encourage them to bring more area under grain production.

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