Islamabad; The Standing Committee on National Food Security and Research met under Chairmanship of Rao Muhammad Ajmal Khan, MNA in Islamabad this morning.
The Committee was briefed by the Representatives of Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA) and Zarai Taraqiati Bank Ltd (ZTBL) regarding their initiatives for strengthening of agriculture/livestock sector especially to the individual Farmers desirous of establishing small projects for adding value to their agricultural produce. The President ZTBL apprised the Committee that ZTBL was established with the basic aim to financially assist the farming community so that it could contribute in the growth of the country. He further briefed the Committee that ZTBL massively contributed in the agriculture sector through introduction of the combine harvesters, packaged milk, poultry and potato chips industry. He informed that ZTBL had disbursed Rs.76 billion during the 2018 through its production and development loan schemes and women self-empowerment.
The Committee was later briefed about the initiatives by SMEDA for small and medium businesses specially farming community. The representative of SMEDA informed that the Authority does not have any financial resources to assist the small entrepreneurs; however, it assists them with research and analysis of the market. He informed that the regional offices of the Authority exist in every district and necessary information and guidance provided to the farmers to desire indulge in small business activity.
The Committee appreciated the performance of both the Organizations for supporting the agriculture sector, however, directed to enhance their outreach through public interaction and media. The Committee directed ZTBL to extend its banking network to remote areas besides extending maximum credit to rural women on personal guarantee. The Committee also directed SMEDA to assist farmers who desire to add value to their agriculture produce on limited level.
The meeting was attended by MNAs; Mr. Shaukat Ali, Mr. Zahoor Hussain Qureshi, Syed Mobeen Ahmed, Sardar Muhammad Jaffar Khan Leghari, Sardar Riaz Mehmood Khan Mazari, Chaudry Muhammad Ashraf, Ms. Shahnaz Saleem Malik, Mr. Kamal Uddin, Secretary, M/o National Food Security and Research, Chairman (PARC), Director General (NARC) and Senior Officers of the concerned departments.
Source: MINISTRY OF NATIONAL ASSEMBLY OF PAKISTAN