Chairman of National Business Group Pakistan, President Pakistan Businessmen and Intellectuals Forum, and All Karachi Industrial Alliance and Former Provincial Minister Mian Zahid Hussain said wheat import is the cheapest option for Pakistan to tackle the shortage of staples in Pakistan.
Politics should not be done over food security; otherwise, he said Pakistan would have to pay a heavy price.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that Russia and Ukraine were behind 30 percent wheat exports, but their supply chain has been disrupted, and production is going down because of war.
Talking to the business community, the veteran business leader said that now India is banking on getting space in the global wheat market while it is also eying the World Food Program, which purchases wheat from Ukraine to feed 125 million hungry people.
The business leader said that India has been getting a bumper crop of wheat for half a decade. Their farmers are happy, and their storage facilities are full, while in Pakistan, agriculture and farmers’ standard of living are declining.
Pakistan is forced to import food through borrowed dollars due to substandard urea, counterfeit pesticides and herbicides, low-quality seed and the cost of water and energy.
Mian Zahid Hussain said that Bangladesh, UAE and Sri Lanka are already buying wheat from India while India has stepped into Yemen, Afghanistan, Qatar and Indonesian markets.
India is also in talks with Egypt, China, Turkey, Sudan, Bosnia, Nigeria, Oman, South Africa and Iran.
The land and other things are similar in Indian and Pakistani Punjab, but their production is poles apart. At the same time, our policymakers have never thought over the stark difference in agricultural output.