UNIDO with the collaboration of Department of Agriculture, Livestock & Fisheries of Gilgit Baltistan organized a stakeholder consultation under the project Agribusiness and Agro-Industries Department Assistance to Pakistan – Initiative for Gilgit and Baltistan funded by the ONE UN Fund at UNIDO office in Islamabad.
The workshop was opened by H.E. Barbar Aman Barbar, Secretary of Planning & Development, Government of Gilgit Baltistan who said that the government of Gilgit Baltistan is very keen on developing the local agriculture sector through the technical assistance of UNIDO.
Participant from Department Agriculture and the Fisheries Department mobilized local farmers, traders and exporters to review the current situation in these sectors.
The participants including the progressive trout, cherry and apple farmers from Gilgit Baltistan, were found very committed to develop their value chain based on a holistic approach which will be developed by UNIDO.
The interactive discussion and the participation of different stakeholders allowed to get a provided a deep insight to the problems which local farmers and traders are facing at the moment. They indicated the need of both short term and long term corrective measures, particularly related to productivity, packaging, branding and market linkages. Women farmers also made their voice heard by requesting UNIDO for further assistance in developing their productive and compliant capacities.
Ms. Nadia Aftab, UNIDO Country Representative highlighted the importance of UNIDO assistance to uplift the local agribusinesses in Gilgit-Baltistan through improving their productive capacities, compliance with requirements and linking them to markets. The initiative will reinforce sustainable livelihoods in Gilgit Baltistan, also contributing towards the government’s commitment to achieve the various SDGs including SDG1, SDG2 and SDG9, said a press release on Thursday.
The workshop was concluded with the agreement on setting a road map for the selected value chains in Gilgit Baltistan which UNIDO will work on in collaboration with the Department of Agriculture, Planning and Development Department of Gilgit-Baltistan as well as stakeholders and women representative organizations.—APP