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Date farming, processing unit being set up in DI Khan

Date farming, processing unit being set up in DI Khan

PESHAWAR: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Board of Investment and Trade (KP-BoIT) is making efforts for introduction of modern methods to improve yield of various crops and fruits in the province. In this regard, the board has undertaken measures for setting up a modern date farming and processing unit in Dera Ismail Khan.

About 1,000 acres of land has been identified for investors to establish a modern date farming and processing unit in DI Khan, with the operational capacity of 50 tons a day, said the board’s vice-chairman Senator Mohsin Aziz in a statement here on Wednesday.

He said that the plan, initiated in collaboration with the provincial agriculture department, had been divided into two projects, each of approximately 500 acres, which could improve yield and process date fruit from local farms.

He said that the proposed/identified land would be provided to investors on 30 years lease for initiation of the project.

He said that high quality date was produced in different areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, mainly the southern regions like DI Khan, Tank, Lakki Marwat and Bannu.

He said that date was one of the important cash crops because Pakistan ranked among the top 10 date exporting countries.

Mr Aziz said that the board was providing facilitation services under the one-window operation to the local and foreign investors, and striving to attract investment in the province. He said that establishment of the date farming unit would be a step towards modernisation of the agriculture sector. 

The project, he maintained, had identified the land with the support of provincial agriculture department in DI Khan and it would play a vital role in increasing the yield of special varieties of date fruit.

He stated that the project would also create employment opportunities. He said that cleaning, processing and packing of the date were the main features of the project.

He said that the project would also reduce the post-harvest losses of the farmers.

Published in Dawn, May 28th, 2015

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