ISLAMABAD, June 20 (APP): Technological advancements, mechanization, institutional building and transfer of seed technology are the main factors for sustainable agriculture economic development.

This was stated by Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research, Syed Fakhar Imam while chairing meeting of NFS&R Think Tank.

The minister also mentioned that the concept of attaching think tanks with ministries had been approved by Prime Minister Imran Khan to find solutions of key issues. The focus of think tank is to raise the production of key strategic products.

He added that after 18th amendment, country’s agro economy had changed because of devolution of power to provinces. He was of the view that country’s population is increasing so there is need to increase per hectare production.

He asked to make a mechanism through which farmers could practice applied research in the fields.

Fakhar Imam stressed on the three pillars of agricultural system including research, extension and agricultural higher education as the agricultural knowledge triangle. He suggested that this triangle should be planned and sequenced as a system rather than as separate entities.

Later on Secretary NFS&R, Omar Hamid briefed the participants about potential issues of food security.

It was discussed that purpose of creation of Think Tank of sectoral experts to continue evolving situation.

It is the need of time to engage stake holders and to provide quality and diversity.

During meeting, Dr.Ashraf , VC Agriculture University, Faislabad mentioned that as per FAO data of last year, Pakistan is ahead of India in case of cotton and maize production.

He said research should be focused on cotton seed. Even the research should be consortium based.

Dr. Rizwan, a participant from Agriculture University, Peshawar mentioned about issue of climate change.He also asked to control smuggling of food to neighboring countries.

Head of SDPI Dr. Abid Qayyum Sulehr, mentioned about other things like agri zoning and crop insurance.

He requested the minister to pilot crop insurance in few vulnerable areas.

He also focused on early warning system for locusts. He drew attention of the minister on Beijing Hybrid Wheat Seed.It is a drought resistant seed. The minister enquired about field trials of these seeds.

VC Agriculture University,Multan Β replied that these seeds are trialled for 1 year in KPK,Sindh and Punjab.

The minister enquired about vaccine of foot and mouth disease of cattle.

Dr.Khursheed replied that 25mn dose of vaccine was imported,while 5 to 6 mn doses were domestically made.

VNS Islamabad