ISLAMABAD: The cultivation of cotton during the current sowing season has witnessed 14 per cent growth as compared to the corresponding period of last year covering a cultivated area of over 2.65 million hectares across the cotton growing regions of the country.
The cotton sowing targets for the crop season 2019-20 had been fixed at 12.72 million bales as per domestic and export requirements.
The cotton sowing area target for the current crop season (2019-20) was fixed at 2.78 million hectares with Punjab and Sindh covering a large chunk of the area, said Ministry of National Food Security and Research Cotton Commissioner Dr Khalid Abdullah.
Talking to APP the commissioner said that cotton cultivation has been completed over 95.2 per cent of the land as against the set target for current sowing season, which was higher by 14 per cent compared to the same period of last year.
He informed that cotton growing in the Punjab recorded about 9 per cent growth as an area of 2.044 million hectares was used for crop production as against the set target of 2.145 million hectares.
On the other hand cotton sowing in Sindh increased by 35 per cent compared to the corresponding period of the last sowing season, said Dr Abdullah.
In Sindh, the crop was cultivated over 0.608 million hectares as against the set target of 0.64 million hectares in order to produce about 4.6 million cotton bales during the period under review, he added.
The cotton commissioner further added that Sindh had achieved 95 per cent of its sowing target, adding that the crop was also been cultivated over 0.02 million hectares in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and in 0.2 million hectares of Balochistan.
He further informed that the government plans to spend Rs200 billion in five mega agriculture sector development projects during the next 3-5 years in order to exploit the true potential of the sector for poverty alleviation.
The amount would be spent on five agriculture sectors promotion programs including livestock, dairy development, fishers and poultry development which would help in alleviating poverty from the country particularly from the rural areas, he added.
He further informed that five new agriculture markets would be established across the country to provide the farming community access to market and save them for the exploitation of middle man, adding that the existing markets would also be revamped and revitalised.