Italy played vital role in promoting ‘Olive Culture’ in Pakistan

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Ambassador of Italy to Pakistan Andreas Ferrarese on Sunday said that Italy was playing vital role in promoting ’Olive Culture’ in Pakistan for improving olive value.

Talking to a state run news agency, he said there was full potential of olives in Pakistan in which Italy has been playing its role for the betterment and promotion of olive culture in Pakistan.

He said that Italy would cooperate with Pakistan worth €1.5 million for the promotion of olive culture in Pakistan. He said that olive culture means olive supply value chain and procession, without which development in this sector would not be easy in Pakistan.

Replying to a question, he said that “Olive Culture” project worth €1.5 million shall be executed in 26 months in suitable areas by CIHEAM Bari in cooperation with the Ministry of National Food Security and Research (MNFS&R) through the Pakistan Oilseed Department.

He said that it represents a continuum with all the work done by Italy in the past, with a holistic approach encompassing all stages and stakeholders.

Ambassador Andreas said that Pakistan had a lot of potential for olive production and the country could earn foreign exchange by increasing olive production and using it for commercial purposes.

He said that Italian olives were the best in the world in terms of quality. Pakistan could import olives from Italy. Olives, he said, were an integral part of the entire Mediterranean civilization without which

life and culture would be incomplete.

The Ambassador said that Italy had always supported Pakistan’s journey in the field and “We are happy to continue with an aim to develop a sustainable, modern and rich olive culture in Pakistan.”He said that it would not only provide quality edible oil for the Pakistani people but also help reduce the import bill of the country.

Rather, he said, “We look forward to the times when Pakistan would be among leading olive-producing and exporting countries in the world”.

While talking to news agency, Project Coordinator, CIHEAM Bari International Olive Culture, Marco Marchetti said that there was a need to work more on the olive supply chain in Pakistan, the lack of which at present could not reap the benefits in Pakistan.He said that consumption of edible oil in Pakistan is 4.5 million tons for which the market needs to introduce the best olive oil for human health.

Marco Marchetti said that for the promotion of olive oil culture in Pakistan, there was a need to introduce the technology, including awareness to the farmers.