Employing more than 45 percent of the work force and contributing approximately 21 percent to the national GDP, agriculture continues to be an important sector of Pakistan’s economy.
Growth in this sector gives boost to other sectors of the economy. It provides subsistence to more than 60 percent of the population living in the rural areas.
During the outgoing fiscal year 2011-12, agriculture performed well registering an overall growth of 3.1 percent. This was due to positive growth of major crops.
To improve the performance of livestock sector, the newly created Ministry of National Food Security and Research initiated a number of regulatory measures including breed improvement through AI, modernization of laboratory facilities and heath care services.
Pakistan is an important market for Canadian commodities such as canola seed, lentils and pulse. Canada exported more canola seed during 2011 as compared to 2010. However, exports figures for lentils and pulses showed a downward trend in 2011 as compared of 2010.
Currently, Pakistan does not allow the import of live animals from Canada. However, semen and embryos are imported into Pakistan which will help in improving the performance of the local breeds regarding the production of milk and meat.
Opportunities exist for technologies that can help reduce post-harvest wastes, processing of fruits and vegetable, meat and silos for the storage of grains.