SMEDA promoting entrepreneurship in agriculture sector

Salim Ahmed

Lahore

The Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA) has entered into an agreement with Agriculture Department of the government of Sindh for development of entrepreneurship in the agriculture sector.
The agreement was signed by Mr. Shakeel Sheikh, Additional Secretary, Secretary Agriculture, Sindh and Mr. Javed Khattak, General Manager Outreach, SMEDA in presence of Mr. Sher Ayub Khan, Chief Executive Officer of SMEDA and Sajid Jamal Abro, Secretary Agriculture, Government of Sindh.
The agreement has set working lines both for SMEDA and the government of Sindh to run the project “AgriPreneurhsip”, which is targeted to train 500 Agri Graduates for gaining Business Skills, Soft skill and Agri Modules. The Project will facilitate the beneficiaries through handholding and mentoring services by the Legal & Business Development Experts. The exposure visits and networking support would also be provided to the participants to start their own agri businesses in Sindh.
Initially, the project would be executed in 5 districts and in the next phase, it would be extended to all districts of Sindh. The agreement also includes a segment for DairyPreneurship and TechPreneurship projects to be run in collaboration with the concerned departments of the Sindh Government.
CEO SMEDA, in his address, highlighted the role of SMEDA in development of trade and industry in the country. SMEDA, being a premier institution of the Government of Pakistan under Ministry of Industries & Production, is working with a futuristic approach and professional management structure to create an enabling environment for SME development with special focus on self-employment of youth and women, he added.
Giving a brief account of SMEDA services in province of Sindh, he informed that SMEDA had successfully implemented a project on “Women Entrepreneurship Training” under “Benazir Bhutto Shaheed Youth Development Program (BBSYDP)” for 600 female students in collaboration with Women Development Department (WDD), Government of Sindh followed by another collaboration with Youth Affairs Department, Government, Sindh to implement an entrepreneurship program for 2450 trainees besides conducting “Shell-Tameer Program” with the objective to encourage young persons of 18-32 years of age to start and develop their own business. So far 4300 youth have been trained under the program, CEO SMEDA added.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, Secretary Agriculture informed that the rural areas of Sindh had a big problem of unemployment despite having a lot of the young educated persons, who have skill to work on machines to relate agriculture implements & Equipment repairing and manufacturing.

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