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ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research Syed Fakhar Imam said on Thursday that tropical agriculture is well developed in China, and Pakistan can learn a lot from the Chinese experience.

The minister said this while addressing an online workshop on “Tropical Agricultural Science and Technology Cooperation” organised by the Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences (CATAS) and the University of Agriculture.

Imam said that this workshop is focusing on much important, but comparatively less focused area of “Tropical Agriculture”, specifically keeping in view the huge import bill of around US three billion dollars, of palm oil in Pakistan.

The CATAS is the apex body for research and development on tropical crops, he said, adding there is a huge potential for bilateral cooperation in production, processing and value addition of tropical fruits such as banana, coconut, papaya, and pineapple; tropical oil crops such as oil palm, and tropical bio-fuel crops such as King Grass.

He thanked the CATAS and the Chinese government for sharing King Grass germplasm and production technology, which is a promising technology for producing biomass fuel; and also for executing the project on “Tropical Economic Palm Production Technology in Pakistan”.

These initiatives would contribute to meet our food and energy requirements, and the overall development of tropical agriculture in Pakistan, he said.

The workshop was also attended by vice chancellors of various universities, senior officials from Chinese Embassy, Islamabad, scientists from universities and research organisations, and representatives of the Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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