Chief Editor: Ansar Mahmood Bhatti

FAO to support Pakistan for controlling Locust: DG

ISLAMABAD, FEB 15: Federal Minister for NFS&R, Khusro Bakhtiar and Director General of United Nations Food & Agriculture Organization, Qu Dongyu witnessing  signing of MoU between FAO & Ministry of NFS&R.=DNA PHOTO

ISLAMABAD, Feb 15 (DNA): Director General of the Food & Agriculture

Organization of United Nations (FAO) Qu Dongyu is visiting Pakistan from

February 14-16.

He called on the Minister for National Food Security & Research Saturday

in his office along with other senior officials of FAO. Senior officials

from the Ministry of NFS&R were also present during the meeting, a press

statement said here.

The Minister welcomed DG (FAO) to Pakistan and appreciated contribution

of FAO for development of agriculture sector. Pakistan and FAO have long

history of collaboration which may further be strengthened by developing

new cooperation mechanism policy particularly for locust control.

The Minister further apprised that the Government of Pakistan has

declared a national emergency for controlling locust. FAO is an

important development partner and it can provide assistance for

surveillance of locust especially mapping out the situation

intra-regional and regional situation.

Mr. Qu Dongyu thanked the Minister for a warm reception and acknowledged

Pakistan as an important member of FAO. He affirmed to consider

provision of support to compliment the efforts of the Government of

Pakistan for controlling locust. He apprised that locust has delivered a

serious disaster in eastern Africa. FAO is mobilizing its resources in

collaboration with its development partners to cope with this emergency

situation.

Khusru Bakhtyar underlined that the government is likely to launch a

massive operation for locust control shortly for which Department of

Plant Protection (DPP), Provincial Governments and National Disaster

Management Authority (NDMA) will jointly be engaged.

Technical support of FAO would be extremely important to curb the menace

of locust in an effective and timely manner. For this purpose a

coordination cell is being established at the Ministry of National Food

Security & Research. The Minister and the DG (FAO) agreed that FAO and

the Ministry may jointly develop a roadmap for locust control.

Mr. Bakhtyar also appreciated that DG (FAO) has undertaken locust

control as an emergency project and has scheduled an exhaustive visit

tomorrow to some areas in Multan and Depalpur to eye witness the locust

situation.

At the end of the meeting, the Minister and the DG (FAO) also witnessed

signing of a Technical Cooperation Project (TCP) Agreement for locust

control.

Later the Minister presented a souvenir to the DG (FAO) and his team in

good gesture of hospitality. The Minister also hosted a lunch in the

honor of the DG(FAO) and his delegation. DNA

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