LAHORE, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 17th Augst,2016) : Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) Tuesday urged the government to encourage investment of private sector in livestock that could play a crucial role in economic uplift of the country besides generate huge revenue and employment opportunities. LCCI President Sheikh Muhammad Arshad, Senior Vice President Almas Hyder and Vice President Nasir Saeed said on the occasion that value of livestock was higher than all the agricultural products including major, minor and fruit and vegetables.
They said that a little focus on this important sector and public-private partnership could yield miraculous results, adding that appetite for Pakistani meat was strong in both domestic and export markets. They said that exports of live animals should be marginalised and only meat be exported to get maximum benefits. They said that 15 per cent milk was wasted in transportation, requiring instant remedies, and more chillers on farmlands needed to be established.
These could operate through join ownership of farmers, they said adding that chillers should be operated on no-profit-no-loss basis through interest-free loans from the state, returnable in five years time. The LCCI office-bearers said that poultry meat accounts for around 25 per cent of domestic food requirements. The major means to cut cost in poultry was through reducing all import items involved in industry to zero level. They said that local research institutes were required to develop lair-chick farms and establish hatcheries within the vicinities of broiler farms in order to cut the cost of transportation and to keep the overall cost minimal in domestic market.
They said that livestock was the main industry that could be used for poverty alleviation in rural areas. They said that the unused land provided to the farmers for livestock and the animal refuse and dun used for producing biomass, the fuel for generating electricity. This electricity in rural areas could help manage the chiller for milk and at later stage can help freeze meat for exports, he added. Sheikh Arshad said, "In order to root out rural poverty it is recommended to provide five buffaloes, 10 goats and three acres to widows in each village.
Once these are in place, poverty reduction will be ensured and at the same time can provide milk, meat and biomass for the power projects in villages." The LCCI office-bearers said that government should set a target of five percent per year for livestock produce which could easily be achieved if the livestock investment from the state remained concentrated on composite projects from embryo development to export of meat for the farm. They said that efforts must be directed to minimize the intermediaries between the farmer and domestic market on one hand and between the farmer and the international market on the other hand.