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KARACHI: Caretaker Sindh Chief Minister Justice Maqbool Baqar has said that Sindh produces approximately 80 per cent of the total national production of chillies, which amounts to 144,000 matric tons.

This he said while speaking at the ceremony of the first shipment of dried chillies exported from Pakistan to China under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Agricultural Project.

The program was attended by Consul General of China Yang Yundong, Zheng Project Manager Sichuan Litong Food Co. Federal Minister of Food Security & Research Kausar Abdullah Malik and Chinese Ambassador Jian Zaidong’s recorded messages were shown on the screen.

The CM said that the Agriculture Department’s Research Institute, Kunri has developed two new varieties of chillies (Kunri-I and Nageena), which produced 25-30 per cent more yield than local varieties.

He added that chillies produced in Kunri were renowned for their colour and taste.

“The establishment of dehydration and processing facilities could help minimise aflatoxin growth and improve its quality and demand in the international market, which contributes to earning foreign exchange.

He said that in Pakistan, chillies were grown on more than 143,000 acres giving the production of 144,000 metric tons, approximately and Sindh contributes about 80 per cent in national production. In Sindh, major chilli growing districts are Umerkot, Badin, Mirpurkhas, Thatta, Jamshoro, Sanghar, Tando Allahyar, Tando Muhammad Khan, Dadu and Shikarpur.

He said the potential for trade, cooperation, and industry-level partnerships between China and Pakistan is vast and collaborative efforts would serve as an exemplary model, demonstrating how such partnerships could yield economic benefits, create employment opportunities, and foster cross-cultural understanding.

However, the Chinese company Sichuan Litong announced establishment of two chilli processing plants, one at Hyderabad and the other at Faisalabad next year.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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