In view of the ongoing wheat crisis, Pakistan Kissan Ittehad (PKI) on Wednesday urged the government to impose an agricultural emergency in the country.
PKI President Khalid Mehmood Khokhar criticized the government’s policy during a press conference, claiming that as a result, the nation would still need to buy wheat in 2023.
Khokhar claimed that rather than increasing domestic wheat output, the government was assisting foreign farmers by purchasing their products at higher prices.
The Punjab and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa provinces have not made any announcements, while Sindh has set a support price for wheat of Rs 4,000 per maund.
Due to the delay in the support price announcement, farmers are hesitant to expand the area under wheat cultivation. To combat wheat smuggling, he requested that the Punjab government immediately set a support price of Rs 4,000 per maund.
The PKI leader also referred to market fertilizer shortages and urged the government to take immediate action. Due to low yields of crops that are utilized as industrial raw materials, Khokhar added, “fertilizer shortages will also have an impact on exports.”
He claimed that because of insufficient fertilizer input, the wheat crop sowed in November already appeared to be poor. This year, “the production per acre is anticipated to be relatively poor.”
“Compared to the previous Rabi sowing season, the price of a DAP (di-ammonium) bag has increased from Rs6,000 to Rs14,000. Resultantly, farmers had to reduce DAP use for the wheat crop. Despite the rising cost of DAP, the government did not give any support to the farmers,” he complained.