Shahbaz announces Rs 1bn for development of agriculture sector

LAHORE: Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has announced Rs 1 billion for growth and development of the agriculture sector in the province.He made this announcement while addressing a ‘Punjab Agriculture Conference 2016’ at a local hotel on Saturday.Shahbaz Sharif said education, research and planners were needed for enhancing per acre yield of crops. He added that modern technology and cheap agri inputs were vital to increase yield of crops. The chief minister said the aim of Punjab Agriculture Conference 2016 was that all working groups, including academia, small and big farmers, sit together and come up with recommendations so that in light of which improvement and betterment could be ensured to boost agriculture in the province. A meeting of these working groups would be convened on April 3 or 4 and further things would be discussed, he added.

The chief minister announced that a Kisan Commission was being formed and he himself would chair it and it’s meeting, which would be held in every second or third month.He said $36 billion would be utilized for different energy projects out of the total investment of $46 billion given by China.He said most of these power generation projects would complete by 2017 and 2018 after which electricity would be available in abundance at cheap rate. After the completion of 3,600MW power project, which would run on gas, electricity would be available at a cheaper rate and the work in this regard was in progress, he added.

Provincial Agriculture Minister Dr Farrukh Javed on the occasion said due to climatic changes at global level farmers were facing problems and were not getting due profit of their crops.He said, “Keeping in view climate change conditions and local conditions, we have to bring innovation and new policy to cope with existing challenges.”

Provincial Law Minister Rana Sanaullah said completion of power generation projects would bring about a positive change in the country, adding that the Punjab chief minister had always served the masses with honesty and sincerity. He said Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) had faced strict accountability in history of the country and hurdles should not be created through sit-ins and rallies.Awais Ahmed Khan Leghari and Karam Bandial also spoke on the occasion.

Meanwhile, Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif addressed the inaugural function of 5th Pak-China Business Forum in a highly emotional manner and termed Pak-China friendship exemplary in the world.He said that Pak-China relations are unprecedented all over the world. The chief minister fully advocated strong economic, trade and social relations between Pakistan and China in a comprehensive manner and said that China has supported Pakistan in every difficult hour.

Shahbaz in his address termed $46 billion investment in Pakistan a great gift of China and said that China has given this historic package unconditionally and Pakistani nation would never forget this great gift. Referring to the ongoing projects in Pakistan with the cooperation of China, Shahbaz said that the projects in Pakistan remain in files years together but this is first time that not only work has been started on the projects in energy, infrastructure, transport and other sectors, but also that these projects are being forwarded with high speed. He said that work on these projects with such speed and transparency is unprecedented in the history of Pakistan.

The CM said that work has never been carried out on the projects with same hard work and determination. No doubt, a new history is being written and the course of history is changing, he added.


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