Chitral Times Report
ISLAMABAD: The U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan H.E. Mr. Paul Jones called on Federal Minister for National Food Security & Research Mr. Sahibzada Muhammad Mehboob Sultan. The meeting is held in the backdrop of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s forthcoming visit to USA in the second half of July, 2019. Federal Minister said that the incumbent government under the leadership of Prime Minister Imran Khan is trying out all efforts to strengthen the agriculture sector, especially post devolution. The government has identified few areas to be developed on priority & important of those areas are agriculture mechanization, to augment the yield of cotton, development of oilseed and decrease the import bill. Federal Minister said that in next four years our government/ministry is open for cooperation from provinces and friendly countries for mutually beneficial cooperation in agriculture. Mr. Jones said that U.S. is well aware that Pakistan is an important agricultural country. Exchange of technologies in agro field including cooperation in value addition, public private partnership would be welcomed by both the sides. Federal Minister and Mr. Jones mutually agreed that PM’s forthcoming visit would be very important to highlight the preferred areas of cooperation especially in the field of agriculture. Federal Minister Mehboob Sultan asked the honorable guests that the scope of Pakistani mango (exported to almost 48 countries across the globe) export to U.S. could be enhanced, for it meets all the international standards and exported after vapor treatment. This will give a great boost to mango export and U.S could also work in collaboration for value addition of mango in Pakistan which will be mutually beneficial. The Federal Minister further added that dates from Pakistan may also be granted market access in USA; and in view of the forthcoming visit of PM., dates and other products may also be granted market access on reciprocity. U.S. Ambassador requested Pakistan could import meat from US, to which Federal Minister explained that it could be revised after mutual consultation. Federal Minister expressed his desire that both countries must explore venues for mutual cooperation especially when PM’s “Agriculture Emergency Program” has already started. The Prime Minister’s visit to U.S. augurs well and it is hoped that it will bring both countries closer. Mr. Jones also expressed the same desire and assured that he would pursue the matters discussed in the meeting.