President emphasizes research, development for higher rice production

ISLAMABAD, Aug 25 (APP): President Mamnoon Hussain on
Thursday emphasized the importance of research and development for introducing higher yielding and better quality rice seeds in order to increase rice production and exports.
He was talking to a delegation of Rice Exporters
Association of Pakistan (REAP), headed by its Chairman
Muhammad Shafique which called on him here at the
Aiwan e Sadr.
The President underlined that REAP should itself take
the initiative to promote research and development in the
rice sector which would benefit not only the rice exporters
but also rice farmers.
He noted that trade associations had an important role
to play in unlocking the export potential of Pakistan by
fostering business environment and representing interests of
the business community.
He said that the government was committed to providing
an enabling business environment through a consistent policy
direction for trade and industry.
The President appreciated the resilience of rice
exporters in dealing with cyclical business slumps as rice
industry had been under pressure due to drop in international
price of rice.
He noted that the rice sector was the second largest earner
of foreign exchange adding that the government was determined to tap the full export potential of tha sector and had taken steps to encourage value addition.
President Mamnoon assured REAP of his full support in
revitalizing this sector and removing hindrances in increase
of rice exports.
He said that Rice Research Institute, Kala Shah Kaku and
Agriculture University, Faisalabad should also strive to
introduce higher yielding seeds in cotton and rice for
strengthening the country’s economy.
The REAP delegation apprised the President about their
proposals for increasing rice exports and also briefed him on
their problems relating to formulation of Geographical
Indication Law for getting patent right on its Basmati rice,
development of new rice seeds, relief in export refinance
payment, utilization of Export Development Fund and grant of industry status to the rice units.
The delegation praised the government’s policies and
initiatives to promote exports of the country.