Trade: (Call to improve food security situation)


ISLAMABAD: Patron Islamabad Chamber of Small Traders Shahid Rasheed Butt on Sunday asked the government to improve food security situation which is linked to stability.

Pakistan must improve its deteriorating ranking in food security index as almost half of the country’s population remains food insecure, he said. Shahid Rasheed Butt said that every individual has a right to physical and economic access to sufficient, safe, and nutritious food on consistent basis that fulfils the dietary needs.

Affordability, availability and quality of the food in Pakistan needs serious review as hunger is rising despite increase agriculture output which indicates lack of serious efforts on the part of the government.

He said that countries like India, Sri Lanka, Angola, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Malawi, Nicaragua, Niger, Vietnam, and India have performed better than Pakistan.

Government should think seriously about providing cover to over 61 million food insecure people which is a major national issue as rising food prices, floods, poverty, conflicts, terrorism, energy crisis, economic slowdown and political instability are some factors behind hunger.

A bumper wheat crop in the few districts does not guarantee that the rest of the country would have better access to staple, he noted.

Hunger in Pakistan can also be attributed to the lack of an innovative strategy, lack of interest of policymakers in the agriculture sector and failure of SBP to push banks to provide enhanced agricultural loans.