The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has embarked upon an ambitious initiative to prepare and provide opportunities to the youth for starting up promising entrepreneurship pertaining to the agro process sector of the province.
According to an official source, in this regard, four common facility centers have been set up under a project titled-’Youth Empowerment Programme” including Honey Processing Center Tarnab, Maize Silage Units of Domail and Nowshehra, and Trout Reefer Van Swat to hone latent skills of the youth for establishing businesses in the potential agriculture and livestock value addition.
“The youth that accounts for a significant portion of the country’s total population and their hidden potential can be harnessed by providing them opportunities in agriculture which is a major contributor to the provincial economy,” the official observed.
Recently, the official said that the United Nations Development Programme(UNDP), Pakistan in collaboration with its implementing partner Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority “SMEDA” provided machineries to agro-processing Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) for these centers.
The official added that the project would also strive to optimize the women’s participation in these innovative businesses.
The core objective of all CFCs will be the enhancement of shelf life and quality assurance for increased profits to the concerned value chains.
Apart from delivery of modern machinery to these four clusters, the project will also train youth on these businesses. In this regard, the SMEDA and UNDP jointly started training sessions.
All of the projects have received good response from SMEs immediately after its launch. Even before trial run, the CFCs have started receiving processing orders on a rental basis.
The government was working on a multi pronged strategy for boosting the agriculture sector which served as backbone to the provincial economy.
The official added that contributions of the youth towards uplift of the agriculture sector would prove to be a catalyst, adding the initiative would help enable the youth to set up their profitable businesses relating to agro process.