3/18/2005 Pakistan Press International ISLAMABAD - Minister for Food,Agriculture and Livestock Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan has called upon theagriculture scientists to devote their services to make the countryself-sufficient in edible oil production.
Addressing the National Conference on achieving self-sufficiency in Edibleoils here Tuesday, he said Pakistan imports seventy percent of edible oiland sp a huge amount of foreign exchange.
He said that in order to control the situation new ideas and innovativeapproaches are required to introduce some major improvements in oil seedsector.He said that vigorous drive to promote indigenous production of oilseeds are required.
The Minister said Pakistan has the potential to produce a large quantityof oilseeds. Marketing of oilseed produced by the farmers is of paramountimportance to sustain and increase the growth of the cultivation of theoilseeds.
He said the government is closely monitoring the situation and will takecorrective measures to support the farmers.
He said there are positive indications as this year the area undersunflower increased by twenty-seven percent over last year and an increaseof nine percent was witness in the area of canola.He said that we have tosustain such achievement with the joint efforts of farmers, public andprivate sectors.
The Minister said that Pakistan Oilseed Development Board has to play acatalytic role.
He said that oilseed crops have established themselves in the croppingpattern of various ecological zones of the country.He appreciated the newinitiatives of the Oilseed Development Board for planting of olive and oilpalm for the producing of oil.