Farmer organizations have expressed serious concern over low application of fertilizer, saying particularly reduced use of DAP nutrient on wheat crop would spell disaster in the Rabi season.
Pakistan Kisan Ittehad president has demanded the government give subsidy directly to farmers for increasing use of DAP at least 50% of DAP price. According to Khalid Mahmood Khokhar,
President, Pakistan Kisan Ittehad, lower application of DAP by farmers on upcoming Rabi wheat crop could reduce wheat production by at least 20 percent which translates into loss of around 5.4 Million tons in production.
Hence, he added, import of additional 5.4 million tons of wheat will require, costing around USD3 billion. This is in addition to the 3 million tons of wheat already being imported.
He was of the view that DAP fertilizer price has been increased to Rs14,800 per bag against Rs6,000 per bag in the past 12 months. Resultantly, only 600,000 tons of DAP offtakes was witnessed versus 851,000 tons in previous year. Moreover, due to dollar shortage and other factors, only 352,000 tons DAP stocks available in the country in July, 2022 versus around 450,000 tons in corresponding period of last year. Most worryingly, only 222,000 tons imports has been made versus 725,000 tons imports in last years.
One of the biggest reasons of reduced Offtakes and application of DAP on crops has been higher DAP prices.
While giving recommendations, Pakistan Kisan Ittehad president demanded the government give subsidy directly to farmers for increasing use of DAP at least 50% of DAP price. International DAP prices have started falling – take advantage of falling prices to import more DAP. Only around 35% of Pakistan DAP requirement can be produced locally due factory capacity limitation.