Pakistan Biotechnology Information Center (PABIC) Lahore Chapter in collaboration with CropLife Pakistan and Forman Christian College University Lahore, organized a webinar which was attended by scientists, policymakers, representatives from leading biotech institutes, academia, crop science industry, farmers and other stakeholders. The main theme of the webinar was the importance of technology in growth of agriculture sector.
Dr Kauser Malik, Dean of Postgraduate studies FCCU and Director of PABIC Lahore, highlighted that “Crop biotechnology has all the ways to make the agricultural sector of Pakistan to flourish. The government needs to focus on supporting small and marginalized farmers and promote small scale innovative technologies to promote growth in this sector. A lot of strategic planning is needed in streamlining the biotechnology products in the country.”
Prof. Dr. Iqbal Choudhary, the Coordinator General COMSTECH, said that “During pandemic period the science has demonstrated the true spirit of researchers to find solutions under limited national capacity.’
“The global pandemic has wreaked havoc on food supply systems in Pakistan and across Asia. Existing issues across the food value chain have been exposed and exacerbated by COVID-19, while new ones have been created as well. Our responsibility as stakeholders is to ensure the men and women who drive food security across the region are supported to do just that.” stated Dr. Sianghee Tan, Executive Director CropLife Asia who was also part of the Webinar.
Dr Yusuf Zafar, former chairman PARC, reminded and stressed to revolutionize and update the storage for the grain and reporting systems in Pakistan. He said “The way forward is revisiting the procurement policies, incentivizing the private sector for grain storage and involving foreign investment to develop modern storage and handling system.”
Murtaza Quddusi, Regulatory Affairs Manager at BASF, advised and instructed the participants on various problems and delays in the agriculture supply chain due to COVID lockdowns across the country and rest of the world. Quddusi underlined, “The potential of digital technologies for farmer outreach and knowledge dissemination activities, and shared the success of CropLife member companies in overcoming physical restrictions to serve the farmers through such innovative methods.”