The Calling attention notice has been served by the Parliamentarians before National Assembly (NA) of Pakistan on kinnow rate for farmers and sought clarification from Minister of National Food and Security, government of Pakistan. The notice stated would like to draw the attention of the Minister for National Food and Security towards the problems faced by citrus (kinnow) growers in the country.
The Citrus Exporters Association (PFVA) have reduced the price of Rs 250 per mound as compared to last year price Rs 850 to 600 which is great concern for the million of kinnow growers in the country. “It is serious matter which warrants appropriate response from the Minister on the floor of the house immediately,” NA members added.
In reply of Parliamentary Secretary for National food and Security Amir Sultan replied to house that federal government will take up the issue of citrus (kinnow) prices and other problems of farmers with the Punjab Government, said at floor of the house in National Assembly. “Responding to a calling attention notice in the National Assembly, he replied that agriculture sector was a devolved subject and the prices for commodities were set in provinces.
Amir Sultan said, “We have written a letter to the provincial government and the matter of kinnow growers will be taken up and then the issue will be discussed with the movers of the motion”. On this move, FPCCI Former Chairman on Horticulture Exports and Secretary General Businessmen Panel, Ahmad Jawad viewed it is a rightly decision of the Parliamentarians to take up the important matter in the National Assembly because right now kinnow belt in Punjab emerged as a Industry for kinnow exports, if we don’t offer appropriate rates to farmers this year then ultimately kinnow exports may suffer which will be commence on December 1st. “Now let see how Punjab Government would respond”.
“Similarly the silent lip of the local administration of Sargodha has proved that they don’t want to resolve the important issue which was exist from the last two months in the largest belt of kinnow producing due to some pressure,” he said. Jawad also said last year kinnow were purchased for Rs 850 per mound and now proposed rate of Rs 600 rate which is highly unjustifiable after the recent inflation and the revised prices of DAP, Potash and Urea have gone up compare with last year including the price of diesel reached up to Rs 133 per litre, so how growers can compete when cost of production already increased.
“In previous government tenure Urea and DAP prices were Rs 1200 and Rs2380 per bag respectively and in the incumbent government the Urea and DAP Prices are Rs 1925 and Rs 3395 per bag respectively and the price of potash Rs 4200”. He further briefed kinnow exports were closed around 360,000 tons and we have the capability to increase up to 500,000 tons with the support of the government, provided also due relief to local farmers.
As Punjab produces over 95% of the fruit, mainly in Sargodha district because of its favourable growing conditions and adequate canal and sub-soil water. Kinnow constitutes 80% of the citrus fruit and is a major export commodity. He further mentioned application of modern techniques and traditional practices at all stages of growth and during the post-harvest phase can not only add value to the fruit which attracts premium prices but can also increase exports which fetch foreign exchange.—Agencies