ISLAMABAD, Jan 1 (APP):Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday said the government, in cooperation with China, was focusing on research for enhancing the yield of various crops, including cotton as 60 percent of the country’s exports were related to latter.

He was talking to a delegation of All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA), which called on him here.

The prime minister said cotton was an important crop of Pakistan and its produce created economic and job opportunities in the country.

He stressed for strict action against the mafias involved in the adulteration of pesticides and seed varieties.

The prime minister, on the suggestion of delegation, directed the Commerce Division to appoint a focal person to look after the matters relating to cotton production.

He also directed for the consideration of proposals regarding amendments in the Seed Act and the allocation of cotton cess for the research relating to the cotton crop.

The process of registration of seeds of various varieties and tax refunds should be made easy, the prime minister added.

The APTMA delegation thanked the prime minister and the government’s economic team for the measures regarding the augmentation of textile exports.

They told the prime minister that the country’s textile exports in the current fiscal were feared to drop due to last year’s “Tiddi Dal” (locusts) attack on cotton crop which caused enough losses and reduced the production.

The delegation also presented various suggestions for enhancing the production of cotton in the country.

The delegation included Gohar Ejaz, Rehman Naseem, Amir Fayyaz Sheikh, Fawad Mukhtar, Khawaja Muhammad Anees, Danish Qaisar, Kamran Arshad, Abdur Raheem Nasir, Yusuf Abdullah, Shahid Sattar, Hamid Zaman Khan and Tariq Masood.

Advisor on Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood, Advisor on Finance Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, Board of Investment Chairman Syed Zubai Gilani, Federal Board of Revenue Chairman Syed Shabbar Zaidi, and the Secretary Commerce Division were also present in the meeting.