ILLUSTRATION: MOHSIN ALAM KARACHI: Sounding cautious, Pakistan-based economists had dismissed a further slowdown in the national economy months ago, expecting that better water availability would lend much-needed support to the agriculture sector – a key component of the economy. However, a massive surge in fertiliser prices, impact of climate change and locust attack played havoc with the optimism. These factors are set to turn the economists’ little doubt into a major worry. “A study suggests that the agriculture sector performance has continued to decline for the past 19 years. The sector is feared to continue the downward trend in the 20th straight year – FY20,” Sindh Abadgar Board (SAB) Senior Vice President Mahmood Nawaz Shah told The Express Tribune. Agricultural growth under Naya Pakistan The share of agriculture sector – crops and livestock – in the gross domestic product (GDP) was around 21-22% in recent years. “It (agriculture sector) may hardly retain a share of 18-19% in GDP this year (FY20),” said Agri Forum Pakistan Chairman Ibrahim Mughal. Acute shortage of water did not let the agriculture sector perform well last year – FY19. This year, the availability of water was not an issue but a “massive increase in fertiliser (urea and… Read full this story
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