Agriculture Cooperation under CPEC

Agriculture stands as a fundamental pillar of Pakistan's economy, contributing significantly to GDP, employment, and foreign exchange revenues. Considering the potential of Agriculture sector for development of Pakistan’s economy, China and Pakistan embarked on enhancing collaboration in this sector by establishing a dedicated Joint Working Group (JWG) under the CPEC framework and signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) vis-à-vis agricultural cooperation in November 2018. It is envisaged to enhance agricultural productivity, technology adoption and value addition which will lead to food security and economic prosperity. Thus far, both sides have held three meetings of JWG resulting in consensus to enhance bilateral cooperation in the following crucial areas:
  • Capacity Building: Enhancing the skills and knowledge of Pakistani farmers and agricultural workers to improve productivity and efficiency.
  • Germplasm Resources: Exchanging plant and animal genetic resources to enhance crop and livestock varieties.
  • Agriculture Product Processing: Modernizing and improving post-harvest processes to reduce wastage and enhance product quality.
  • Technology Extension: Facilitating the transfer of advanced agricultural technologies and practices.
  • Fisheries: Boosting Pakistan's fisheries sector through cooperation and development.
  • FMD Free Zones in Pakistan: Establishing Foot-and-Mouth Disease-free zones to ensure the health of livestock and promote exports.
  • Market Information and Trade: Enhancing access to information and trade opportunities.
  • Cooperation for agricultural development under CPEC.

Highlights of Agricultural Cooperation

The Governments of Pakistan and China have signed numerous protocols paving way for the export of agricultural commodities such as Vegetables, Fruits, Dairy and Meat products from Pakistan to China and facilitating the involvement of Chinese businesses in Pakistan's agriculture sector. In efforts to enhance buffalo genetics and milk production in Pakistan, M/s Royal Group, a Chinese enterprise, has established a specialized lab for genetic improvements in buffalo and a dairy farm in Lahore. Another Chinese enterprise namely CMEC has also launched large-scale farming and processing industry for chili crops, with a focus on export to China. CMEC has started export of red chilies from Pakistan to China. Qingfa seeds, a subsidiary of China National Agricultural Development Group, has introduced high-quality seed production methods and cultivation practices for canola crop. Qingfa seeds has also established a farmer training centers to impart modern farming techniques to local farmers. They are also focused on establishment of advanced oil extraction facilities to support the canola oil industry.