MABAD - Federal Minister for Food and Agriculture Mir Israrullah Zehri has said that Passco will procure 1.3 million tons of wheat this year and the preparations are on to ensure the provision of the announced support price (Rs 950 per 40 kg) and arrange bags and storage materials for the commodity.
He disclosed this after receiving a detailed briefing from MD Passco.
All preparations must be done well in time to ensure procurement of wheat on the officially announced support price. Bags for 8 million tons are presently available and bags for the remaining 5 million tons will be purchased soon. Creation of 1.01 million tons storage capacity in the shape of steel silos throughout the country with the assistance of IDB at a cost of $113 million will improve the existing storage capacity, added the minister. MD Passco informed that steel silos would be constructed on 34 sites/complexes countrywide to enhance the storage capacity of grains. IDBs share in the form of soft loan will be $95 million while the Government would contribute remaining $18 million.
The project will be completed in four phases over a period of four-year time. First phase of the project is proposed to be completed from July 2011 to June 2012 in which 9 complexes would be built. Nine complexes in the 2nd phase while 8 each in the 3rd and 4th phase will bring the project to its end in June 2015.
Supply of certified seed to the maximum number of farmers will greatly enhance agricultural output in the country. Strict measures must be observed to ensure the availability of quality seed. Efforts are speeded up to certify seed for IRRI-6 variety of rice for the upcoming sowing season.
Proposals and plans should be worked out to turn Federal Seed Certification & Registration Department (FSC&RD) into a revenue generation entity, Zehri said after a briefing by DG FSC&RD.