Lahore: The water crisis across Pakistan is on the rise due to this, there is a growing fear of a decline in wheat production, according to reports.
Indus River System Authority (IRSA) has warned the provinces that water scarcity has reached 45% at present. Regarding the crisis caused by water scarcity in Pakistan, Sindh Agriculture Advisor Manzoor Wassan said in a statement that water scarcity in Sindh is increasing day by day. Wassan added that water scarcity can damage sugarcane, mango, rice, pepper, olive, and palm orchards across the country.
On the other hand, Chairman Cereals Association of Pakistan Muzammil Chappal, says that dependence on imports has increased this year to meet the shortfall in wheat production. Chappal added that according to initial reports, 22 to 23 million tonnes of wheat have been produced this year. In addition, the price of wheat is rising in the international market. The price has reportedly reached 500 per tonne, however, the wheat crisis can be averted by formulating an immediate import policy.
The Cereals Association said the private sector should be allowed to import in order to avert a possible wheat crisis. He further said that due to declining production, government agencies are also facing difficulties in completing the procurement of wheat.
On the other hand, Federal Minister Muftah Ismail has said that the government is considering giving subsidies for providing cheap flour to the citizens.
According to sources, Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Chairman and Foreign Minister (FM) Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, while addressing a meeting of the Federal Cabinet on water scarcity in the country, said that people, especially farmers, are facing problems due to water scarcity across the country.
He said that one of the major reasons for water scarcity was a disruption in the supply of water to the provinces by IRSA. He argued that the previous government’s mismanagement of the fertilizer crisis and water supply system caused damage to crops, especially in the lower areas.
Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said that when the Sindh government proposed to set up gas power generation plants, the previous governments rejected this plan. FM Zardari said that a food security task force should be formed in the country so that we can face a possible food crisis.
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