ISLAMABAD-Chairman Pakistan Hitech Hybrid Seed Association (PHHSA) Shahzad Ali Malik on Thursday said Pakistan must actively attract investments in the agricultural inputs industry and agro-processing sector. The initiative would help to address effectively the challenges of soaring import bills, suboptimal export growth, and ever-increasing rural poverty.
Talking to a delegation of progressive farmers here led by Shoukat Ali Arain, he said Pakistan is in dire need of foreign direct investment (FDI) to improve its foreign exchange reserves and to bridge the investment gap the country is currently experiencing. He said such investments are crucial to boost its agricultural and industrial production, which can lead to job creation, increased exports, and the generation of additional tax revenues.
He said the agriculture sector has gained notable prominence among the sectors with significant potential for FDI and various factors, including the ongoing food crisis in the country, availability of uncultivated land spanning millions of acres, and cost-effective workforce. Pakistan’s conducive agro-climatic conditions to grow a wide range of crops, make a compelling case for promoting FDI in the agriculture sector, he added.
He said several sub-sectors within agriculture still continue to offer viable investment prospects, including corporate farming. He said undertaking corporate farming is far easier for an investor compared to setting up and operating any agro-industry. Shahzad Ali said the newly constituted SIFC is in a far better position to assure investors of a conducive investment climate and ease of doing business in corporate farming than that of agro-industry.