Staff Reporter Islamabad
President Dr Arif Alvi on Tuesday said with the best mango produce in the world, Pakistan had the potential to make a bigger export footprint of the “King of Fruits” by adopting proper agrarian techniques.
“Introduction of mango’s new varieties through research, quality control and value addition can help Pakistan earn high revenues in the international markets,” the president said in his address at the Mango Festival here at the Aiwan-e-Sadr.
The Mango Festival was organized by the Rahim Yar Khan Chamber of Commerce and Industries, and the Ministry of Commerce that showcased a wide assortment of local mangoes, ranging from the well-known varieties like Chaunsa, Sindhri, Dusehri and Anwar Ratol to the less known Coconut Ambri, Surkha Gulab and Samar Bahisht.
President Alvi said Pakistan’s sweet mangoes could no doubt be presented before the world with great pride and mentioned in that regard his ‘mango diplomacy’ under which he had sent the gifts of mangoes to the rulers, presidents and prime ministers of different countries.
The mango gifts were sent to 37 countries this year and to 17 last year, he added.
The president stressed that Pakistan needed to take measures in quality presentation of food produce to boost the exports.
To check wastage of perishable fruits, proper pest control techniques should be used before their transportation to the local and international markets, he added.
Converting mangoes into pulp without use of preservatives could be a good idea to preserve the fruit for local use and export purpose, he added.
He said promotion of agricultural sector was also important to ensure food security, which could be an impending challenge in coming times.
Dr Alvi said to facilitate the traders, the gover nment had taken effective steps such as ease of doing business, digitalization of business modes, grant of soft loans and offering entrepreneurship opportunities for women.
As regards the looming fourth wave of COVID-19, the president advised the masses to continue adhering to the precautionary measures, particularly the use of face masks.
“I appeal to you that help Pakistan maintain its edge in overcoming the coronavirus during the previous waves of the virus,” he added.
President Alvi along with his wife Begum Samina Alvi visited the stalls, where traders from Multan, Bahawalpur, Khairpur, Jhang, Mirpur Khas and Hyderabad had put on display varieties of their mangoes.
Earlier, Punjab Minister Bashir Ahmed Khawaja said Rahim Yar Khan, the fifth populous district of Punjab, was the top producer of mangoes in the province.
He said having equal geographical distance to all the provincial capitals, Rahim Yar Khan’s growers were effectively transporting their produce to the rest of the country.