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KARACHI: Chairman of National Business Group Pakistan and President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum, Mian Zahid Hussain has said proper funds should be allocated in the upcoming budget to ensure water security which is essential for food security.

He said that the struggle between provinces for water has intensified which should be resolved through proper intervention while wastage should be controlled as mismanagement in the water sector is resulting in a loss of twelve billion dollars per annum, he said. Mian Zahid Hussain said that water availability is not as serious as its mismanagement and wastage while resources are under pressure due to increasing population, climate change, and rapid urbanization.

He said that water availability and conservation will also improve agriculture reducing prices and providing some relief to the people.

He said that 95 percent of the available water is consumed by the agriculture sector while masses and the industrial sector is consuming five percent of the water.

Millions are without the facility of clean drinking water but abundant water is being provided to influential landlords while many poor farmers are ignored, he added. He informed that 80 percent of the available water is consumed by wheat, rice, sugarcane, and cotton crop having a small share in the GDP while mismanagement in the water sector is resulting in an annual loss of 12 billion dollars. Masses and industrial sector is facing water shortages in Karachi and some areas of Sindh have witnessed a reduction in water 80 percent over the last eight years resulting in perpetual crisis and sea intrusion leaving fertile lands barren and planters jobless.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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