Wheat is one of the most strategic crops globally, which has always been a big challenge for successive governments. Wheat is the most important staple food crop of the country. Although grown on a large area, there have been crises of crop in the past mainly due to lower minimum support price (MSP) for wheat.
The federal government on March 19, 2021 increased MSP to Rs 1800 per 40 kg from Rs 1650 per 40 kg and decided to start procurement from this month. The decision was taken at a meeting held under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Imran Khan. It is important to note that the country produced 25.2 million tons of wheat and imported 3.56 million tons of wheat last year. This time the wheat production will be of 26.2 million tons.
According to media reports, the government’s estimation of wheat output for this year will be slashed by 1.5 million tons against the consolidated yearly requirements during 2020-21. Also, according to an estimate, the country must produce 28 million tons of wheat to meet round-the-year requirements of its population and strategic reserves.
Khan Faraz (Former secretary, Pakistan Tobacco Board)
Copyright Business Recorder, 2021