AGRICULTURE FEATURES IN GDP

S.M. ABBAS ZAIDI,
Research Analyst
, PAGE
July 21 - 27, 2008

Agriculture sector plays an important role in the economy of Pakistan . It has the capacity to produce the best quality of Wheat, Rice, Sugarcane, Maize, Fruits, Vegetables, Grams, Cotton, and supplementary products in the livestock segment. Agriculture contributes 21% of the GDP while around two third of the population is directly or indirectly depends up agriculture for its bread and butter. This sector serves many allied industries such as Textile, leather, Pesticides, Tobacco, Fertilizers, Sugar along with many other sectors. Agriculture also happens to be the biggest foreign exchange earner in terms of supplying raw material for the manufacturing sector.

YEARS

GDP GROWTH RATE (%)

AGRICULTURE (%)

2002-03

4.7

4.3

2003-04

7.5

2.3

2004-05

8.6

6.7

2005-06

6.6

1.6

2006-07

6.8

3.7

2007-08

5.8

1.5

The above chart shows the inconsistency and downward flow of the Agriculture Sector share in GDP growth rate. In the year 2002-03 GDP was 4.7% and agriculture 4.3%. The GDP shows increase in 2003 to 2005. However from 2005-06 our GDP has been on the declining side. The recent figure shows the GDP at 5.8% in 2007-08. While Agriculture went high in 2004-05 but has shown a concerning decline since then. The recent figure shows a horrifying figure of just 1.5% in 2007-08 which reflects the current situation of Agriculture sector.

AGRICULTURE SECTOR

COMMODITY

2003-04

2004-05

2005-06

2006-07 R

2007-08 P

Agriculture

964,853

1,027,403

1,092,098

1,132,041

1,148,871

Crops

451,178

511,051

496,462

525,655

519,871

Major Crops

327,057

385,058

370,005

400,798

388,904

Minor Crops

124,121

125,993

126,457

124,857

130,967

Livestock

473,771

484,876

561,500

577,378

599,217

Fishing

13,611

13,691

16,540

16,606

18,431

Forestry

26,293

17,785

17,596

12,402

11,352

Crops are the main contributors of our agriculture with 69%. The main grown crops are Wheat, Rice, Cotton and Sugarcane contributing around 90% of the value-added in major crops. Minor crops include Oilseed, pulses and vegetable account for almost 12% of the value-added agriculture followed by Livestock with 30%, Forestry and fisheries around 2%.

LAND UTILIZATION IN PAKISTAN

Year/ Province

Geogra-
phical area

Total area reported col.
(4+5+6+7)

Forest area

Not available for cultivation

Cultur-
able waste

Cultiva-
ted area col.(8+9)

Current fallow

Net area sown

Area sown more than once

Total cropped area col.
(9+10)

Agricul-
ture land (13+4)

Arable land (6+7)

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

13

2006-07

Total (P)

79.61

57.23

4.22

22.66

8.33

22.02

6.43

15.59

7.91

23.50

34.57

30.35

Punjab(R)

20.63

17.66

0.50

2.97

1.63

12.56

2.15

10.41

6.27

16.68

14.69

14.19

Sindh

14.09

14.08

1.03

5.96

1.49

5.60

2.86

2.74

0.98

3.72

8.12

7.09

NWFP

10.17

8.34

1.33

3.90

1.21

1.90

0.56

1.34

0.55

1.89

4.44

3.11

Balochistan

34.72

17.15

1.36

9.83

4.00

1.96

0.86

1.10

0.11

1.21

7.32

5.96

AGRICULTURAL SECTOR & CHALLENGES

Despite having a strong agriculture base, Pakistan still it faces shortage of food which is extremely unfortunate for the country. There are number of reasons for the creation of this current situation. The neglecting attitude of the government towards agriculture, which has resulted in Non-availability of seeds, pesticides, rising inflation because of which input costs are high and shortage of water are the main factors behind those crisis. These problems underscore elements like poor yields, less marketability of agricultural products, wastage of water along with its shortage because of lesser dams and canals are the main stream concerns faced by the sector. Therefore, it is very important for this government to take both short term as well as long term measures in order to improve and revive this sector. The government must take steps of controlling and minimizing the cost of production to a consistent level. The quality must also be maintained so that we can compete with international market. The government needs to encourage the private sector in order to control the shrinking of agricultural land. The government needs to change the old system which has been a major factor in less utilization of agricultural productivity. Government needs to introduce new technology which would enable the farmers in low cost and high profitability. The government needs to introduce a system which can help the farmers in their training and development. It is also very important that government must give importance to Hotty Culture (fruits) as Pakistan produces one of the finest fruits in the world. A proper research and development system will give number of benefits as it will help the government in many industries such as Pharmaceuticals. All these steps can definitely give significant boost and better results as it will help improve the Agricultural sector.

CONCLUSION

Without any doubt, God has given so many resources to Pakistan . It is unfortunate that lack of proper planning and lack of sincere effort has been the main factors for this current situation. Therefore, a proper short term and long term strategy is immediately required by the Government in order to revive the Agriculture sector in order to run in a smooth direction.