PARC and Sindh Engro Coal Mining Company (SECMC) signs Mou to promote olive farming in Thar desert

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Thar region could prove to be a major production hub for Olive. Dr. Ghulam Muhammad Ali Chairman PARC
Islamabad
Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) and Sindh Engro Coal Mining Company (SECMC) have signed Memorandum of Understanding to boost olive farming in Thar Desert. Dr. Ghulam Muhammad Ali Chairman PARC and Muhammad Azhar Malik Vice President SECMC signed on behalf of their organizations. Rai Muhammad Murtaza Iqbal, Mian Muhammad Shafiq, Mr. Kamal Uddin members of NA Standing Committee on National Food Security & Research and Dr. Muhammad Younus Arain DG PARC-SARC Karachi including other high officials were also present on the occasion.
Speaking on the occasions, Dr. Ghulam Muhammad Ali Chairman PARC said that olive farming in Pakistan has got boost results, since olive is drought – tolerant plant therefore; it has been decided to introduce olive farming in Thar desert which has been found best suited for olive plantation. Through MoU it is intended to establish a cooperative relationship for the development of a commercial value chain that will enhance livelihood opportunities and the economic development of the people of Thar Block-II.
Under the MoU, the Chairman further told that, SECMC will provide 05 acres of Land to be used for the purpose of plantation and water to carry out trial of Olive plantation whereas PARC shall be responsible for technical support along-with provision of Olive plants and drip irrigation for 05 Acres to SECMC site. “Based on this collaboration, an area like Thar which we consider as a desert / arid zone, it can be a very productive zone for olive and it also can be a timely move to save foreign exchange” the Chairman also added.
Sharing his views. Muhammad Azhar Malik Vice President SECMC said that our collaboration spans about three and a half years, we have done a lot of work on biosaline agriculture and supported each-other deliberately. Earlier we have developed 20 acres orchard and fodder under high efficiency irrigation system established by PARC-AZRC Umerkot which have given promising results in Thar desert.
Muhammad Azhar Malik Vice President SECMC appreciated PARC efforts in agriculture sector and also thanked Dr. Ghulam Muhammad Ali, Chairman PARC who kindly consented to get MoU signed to uplift the livelihood opportunities of barren land.