Pakistan is developing country and agriculture is the backbone of it’s economy . Our 70% of entire population is directly and indirectly dependent upon agriculture. Pakistan is generally progressing day by day in every field as well as agriculture sector but with the passage of time its facing many challenges and problems.
According to the survey, agriculture sector was contributing 65% of GDP in 1965 and in present year it’s just sharing 26% of GDP. Pakistan’s major crops are cotton, rice, wheat, sugarcane and maize. These major crops contributed nearly 7.7% last year. Minor crops especially onions, mangoes,canola and pulses contributed 3.6%, Fishery contributes 16.6% and Forestry contributes 8.8%. Due to various reasons, our per acre yield is very low in our country as compare to other developed countries.
Main challenges faced by agricultural sector are mentioned below:
Pakistan total area is about 79.6 million hectares, from which out of 79.6 million hectares only 23.7 million hectares (28%) area is being used for agricultural purposes. Water logging and salinity affect about 0.10 million acre of land in every year. It not only reduce the productivity but also farming land get damage and after some year it is unable to grow any crop. In Rural areas, Rural infrastructure like roads, storage facilities, electricity, education, transport, sanitation and health facilities etc must be given to meet the requirement of growth of agriculture. Mechanization of agriculture is increasing in Pakistan, but in most of the areas, same old method that were used century ago are equipped. Old and orthodox techniques of production cause low yield than the new international standard. In mostly areas of Pakistan there is shortage of irrigation facilities causes a serious limitation. The lower water supplies will affect the vegetation stage, growth and in the end yield production result will be less. Our Farmers didn’t know about the proper crop rotation, they grow same crop every year which causes exhausts in the fertility of the soil. There is also 20% reduction in productivity of crop yield due to unnecessary rain and unfavorable climatic conditions in Pakistan. Basically our farmers are mostly poor and they have low level of income. Agricultural credit facilities are not very common in Pakistan. Sometime crop need micro nutrients that were coming from fertilizers and farmers have not much income so they don’t use fertilizers, in the result crop didn’t get sufficient nutrients and didn’t provide proper yield. Many agricultural crops like cotton, tobacco, sugarcane, wheat and rice mostly come under attack of insects and pests. Farmer didn’t know the pesticides of that diseases and get their crop damage. Pests and plant diseases reduce the annual productivity of crops. Our Agriculture officers didn’t go to the farmers on time for proper guidance and maintenance of their farm and how to control against diseases. Private Sector is day by day producing new products and increasing their prices and with that farmers are unable to understand the better products.
These all problems can be solved with the help of government and as well as our little efforts.
Government must be notices about all the land that is fertile but under cultivation, so government can start a scheme in which they give pieces of the lands to the poor, and also provide canal irrigation system in those area. Next step should be taken against water logging and salinity soils, upper ministries must invest some rupees to put drip and shower irrigation, and put some gypsum in those soils so these soil can become fertile. Government should provide proper facility to the rural areas, so farmers can easily move towards urban areas for finding crop demands and for sale of their crops in better prices. Agriculture department must do their job in proper way. They have to go towards the farmers for better knowledge about new technology, crop rotation, use of pesticides and when to apply irrigation. Latest machinery should be provided to the farmers at considerable prices to increase the per acre yield. Farmers also focus on government policies for better result. Government need to give loan to the needy and deserving farmers without interest so they can put all their effort in the farm and in the end they get better result, better yield and give money back to the government, with that this’ll help both government and farmer. Training of the farmers must be their once per year. Agriculture scientists must be provide best seed to the farmers so crop can survive in any climatic condition and yield will be increase.
Asmat Ullah Khan & Dr. Muhammmad Yaseen
Department of Agriculture Extension,
College of Agriculture, UOS, Sargodha