Lahore: Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan has said that currently the government has an estimated area of about 200,000 acres under aquaculture but the issue is low productivity.
Bosan said Pakistan Agriculture Research Council and Fishing Development Board were working on various projects in this regard. However, he said that lack of latest technology was the major reason that aquaculture could not flourish in Pakistan.
He expressed these views while talking to reporters after his address to a closing session of a two-day “International Feeding Pakistan Aquaculture Conference held at a local hotel on Thursday.
Talking about wheat prices in the country, he said though the prices of wheat had not been decided yet but the government set a target of 8 million ton wheat this year. The prices would definitely come down if the government succeeded to have maximum stocks of wheat in the season.
Answering a question about trade with India, the minister said that the government was taking all stakeholders especially the farmers into confidence. He said all reservations would be addressed in the better national interest. At the end, he appreciated the foreigner delegates and researchers who had come to promote aquaculture in the country. The minister assured his full support to promote aquaculture in Pakistan.
Earlier, Dr Kavin put his recommendations before the minister to make effective policies to promote aquaculture.
Dr. Michael Schwarz, President of World Aquaculture Society, Dr Kavin Fitsman and Mr. R. Shahnawaz Janjua, Country Representative, American Soybean Association& World Initiative for Soy in Human Health also addressed the conference. A number of students and researchers of aquaculture and fishing were present on the occasion.
Talking about increasing prices of potatoes, Bosan said that middlemen were involved in hoarding which led prices to high. He said there was huge potential of fishing and aquaculture in Pakistan, because of diversity of water.
Dr. Michael Schwarz, President of World Aquaculture Society said through its commitment to excellence in science, technology, education and information exchange would contribute to progressive and sustainable development on aquaculture especially in Pakistan.
Dr Shah Nawaz Janjua, American Soybean Association & World Initiative for Soy, said that Pakistan had great potential to promote fishing but government support and policies only could make it true.
Small scientific poster exhibition were also held which benefited large number of farmers from different parts of the country. The special trainers offered their expertise to local farmers for better equipment.