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Pakistan, Belarus to cooperate in dairy farming

Pakistan, Belarus to cooperate in dairy farming

ISLAMABAD: The second meeting of Pakistan-Belarus Joint Working Group on Agriculture concluded here on Friday with the signing of protocols which laid the negotiating platform for creation of joint ventures to produce dairy products in Pakistan using raw materials imported from Belarus.

The Belarusian ministry of food and agriculture organised an exhibition of milk and halal meat products produced in Belarus on the sidelines of the joint working group meeting.

As a follow-up to the decisions taken at the joint working group’s first meeting, Pakistan has submitted to Belarus protocols for phytosanitary compliance for the export of kinnow, mango, rice and potato for consideration by Belarus.

The Belarusian side at the working group meeting shared with the Ministry of National Food Security & Research (MNFSR) phytosanitary regulations whose implementation would be needed to facilitate the export of Pakistani products to Belarus. The two sides agreed to further discuss the compliance issues bilaterally.

The Belarusian deputy minister of agriculture and food, Ihar Brylo, and the MNFSR’s additional secretary, Mohammad Hashim Popalzai, were designated focal persons for implementation of decisions taken at the joint working group meeting.

At the joint working group meeting, the Belarusian delegation was led by Ihar Brylo and the Pakistani side by Hashim Popalzai. Ambassador of Belarus to Pakistan Andrei Ermolovich also attended the meeting.

The two sides agreed to hold the next meeting of the joint working group tentatively in August this year in Belarus.

During the working visit to Islamabad the Belarusian delegation held negotiations with Minister of National Food Security and Research Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan, top management of research agencies and companies in the field of agriculture.

Mr Bosan during his meeting with the Belarusian deputy minister discussed the scope to expand cooperation between the two countries in the vast field of agriculture. In this regard, he sought Belarusian cooperation in strengthening farm machinery research institute in Pakistan, strengthening and capacity building of veterinary research institutes and disease diagnostic laboratories; integrated insect pest and disease management in horticultural and field crops; and aquaculture and shrimp culture with facilities of fish feed and its processing.

Secretary National Food Security Mohammad Abid Javed, Chair­man of Pakistan Agricultural Research Council Dr Nadeem Amjad and Hashim Popalzai assisted the federal minister during talks with the Belarusian delegation.

Mr Bosan briefed the Belarusian minister on the scope of livestock sector in Pakistan with particular reference to value addition products. He invited Belarusian investment in Pakistan to establish infant formula plants from Belarusian dry milk of European standard as well as production of dry milk powder and other dairy processed products from local milk production.

Published in Dawn, March 19th, 2016

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