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Korean Delegation Visit to NARC for Cooperation in Agriculture and Rural Development

Islamabad (May 06)……A Korean delegation comprising  eight members led by Mr. Lee Bonghoon, Chairman Korean National Committee on Irrigation and Drainage (KCID) and Vice-President, International Commission on Irrigation and Drainage (ICID), Mr. Park Tae Seon, Director General, Korean Rural Community Corpotation , Mr. Bang Sung Soo, Director (KRC) , Mr. Shen Yang HaoHao, S.B. Super Soybeans Technology, Korea and other members visited National Agricultural Research Centre (NARC) Islamabad on Friday for cooperation in agriculture sector and rural development.

Dr. Nadeem Amjad, Chairman Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) while presiding over meeting with Korean delegation said that the PARC is the apex agricultural organization at national level which is coordinating agricultural research activities in Pakistan with the provinces and international organizations. He highlighted the main field of research i.e. Plant Sciences, Natural Resources, Animal Sciences, Agricultural Engineering, Social Sciences and Coordination. He explained the PARC presence in the provinces with its research centres and institutes such as National Agricultural Research Centre (NARC) in Islamabad, Southern Zone Agricultural Research Centre (SARC) in Sindh for coastal ecological zone, Balochistan Agricultural Research and Development Centre (BARDC) in Balochistan, Mountain Agricultural Research Centre (MARC) in mountain ecological zone and other Institutes in other ecological zones of Pakistan which are working for the improvement of agriculture and food security in the country.  On this occasion, he also highlighted Prime Minister’s of Pakistan scheme for installation of 35000 solar tubewell in the country to address the core issue of “water shortage for agriculture” linked with small farmers.

Dr. Ghulam Muhammad Ali, Acting Director General of National Agricultural Research Centre (NARC) in his briefing said that NARC is the largest agriculture centre in Pakistan at national level. Dr. Pervaiz Khaliq, Senior Director Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation Cell (PRMC) explained NARC mandate, strategic research on national & regional priorities, emerging challenges in agriculture, explanatory research on new commodities, filling gap with regional research agencies, collaboration and linkages with international research centres, provincial research systems, PARC research establishments, extension & development agencies & services to national systems through conservation & supply of germplasm, human resources development, agricultural scientific information and commercialization of technologies & products.. He also highlighted PIASA  degree program (M.phil & Ph.D) and other facilities at the Centre. He also explained NARC achievements of development of new crop varieties / hybrids in wheat, maize, rice, sunflower, canola, mung, mash, masoor, soybean, sugarcane, and horticultural crops; kitchen gardening program, FFS based implementation IPM model, new farm machineries; and other technologies commercialized in various fields of agriculture.

Dr. Ahmad Bakhsh Mahar, Member Plant Sciences PARC highlighted the story of promotion of cultivation of soybean at NARC and its production technology. He said soybean research & development  is the need of our country to curtail the import of soybean in Pakistan for  poultry industry.

Dr. Shahid Rafiq, Member Animal Sciences PARC highlighted the interventions of PARC in livestock sector. He said PARC established National Reference Lab for Poultry Diseases (NRLPD) for SAARC countries to control Avian Influenza.He also mentioned the achievements: control of livestock diseases like HS, Hydro Pericardium Syndrome in Poultry, and other Zoonotic diseases; feed technology, & molasses blocks; aquaculture & fisheries; animal biotechnology & silage production; and other interventions in livestock sector.

The delegation visited field experimental of Department of Horticultural Research and Development (DHRD), Silage Production Plant for small farmers, Cow and Buffaloe Sheds, National Institute of Genomics and Advanced Biotechnology (NIGAB), Plant Genetic Research Institute (PGRI – Gene Bank).

Later on Chairman PARC and Director General KRC Korea signed Minutes of Discussion (MoD) between PARC and  Korea for cooperation between both organizations in manufacturing of high efficiency irrigation system for ground and flood water management, developing Korean Technology Park in NARC, Korean assistance in developing small dams in Pakistan, soybean and strawberry production technologies, sharing Korean Agricultural Policy experience, manufacturing small and medium size agricultural machinery/ equipment including for value addition in agricultural products, and capacity building of Pakistani scientists & strengthening of Pakistani R&D institutes.

(Sardar Ghulam Mustafa)                                                    Edited by:  Muhammad FiazJoyia
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