Lahore :The Punjab government has launched a project of Rs 6 billion named “National Program for Enhancing Profitability through Increasing Productivity of Rice ” in 15 rice districts of Punjab from last year of project to promote mechanization, usage of certified seed and responsible application of pesticides in line with global standards especially EU & USA.
Under this project, farmers are getting subsidy on purchase of certified rice seed, educated on responsible and controlled use of pesticides etc. It is a complete package being given by the government to enhance the productivity of the rice sector.
The project is also aimed at promoting mechanization through subsidizing(50%) use of different machines such as transplanters for increasing plant population and other agricultural implements, said Director Agriculture (Extension) Gujranwala Mr Javed Iqbal while speaking at a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signing ceremony.
Syngenta Pakistan and Galaxy Rice(Pvt) Limited signed the (MoU) to impart training to rice growers regarding the promotion of green chemistries whith shote pre harvest interval including need-based application of pesticides. The training will sensitize farmers to avoid excessive/blind use of pesticides.
Managing Director & CU Head Syngenta Pakistan Kazim Hasnain and Managing Director Galaxy Rice Shahid Tarer signed the document on behalf of their respective organizations.
Javed Iqbal said that the government would bear 50 per cent of the cost on the usage of different types of machinery such as transplanters, nursery raising machines, Rice specialised harvesters, rice straw choppers, rotavators and power sprayers. “It is aimed at converting this sector from the present status of conventional farm machinery into real ICT supported mechanization,” he added.
Managing Director Galaxy Rice Shahid Tarer said that 55 percent of Pakistan economy relies on agriculture and rice crop is one of the most important crops, which is earning precious foreign exchange for the country. He said monitoring of pesticides residue in rice crop had increased and MRLs are revised periodically by the European Union (EU), USA and Gulf countries for the last three to four years. He said that our products are going to the high-end market and we have to keep the pesticide residue below approved levels. Mr Imran Sheikh Agri Business Head Galaxy Rice moderated the event. Chaudary Muhammad Rafiq Director Rice Research Institute Kala Shah Kaku was chief guest. Mr Talfoor Hassan Assistant Director Pest Warning and Quality Control Gujranwala, Mr Tahir Naeem Head of Farm Advisory Centre Fauji Fertilizers Company Sheikhupura,Dr Javed Akhter Padhiar Deputy Director Agri Extension Gujranwala addressed the participants.