The new Mission Director of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) in Pakistan John Groarke launched the U.S.-Pakistan Partnership for Agricultural Market Development (AMD) initiative at the Serena Hotel today. The program, funded by the U.S. Government, consists of a $21 million series of grants, training sessions and technical improvements designed to improve farming techniques and boost domestic and international market access for Pakistani meat, vegetables, mangoes, and citrus by nearly $140 million over the next four years.
“The United States remains strongly committed to creating economic growth and employment opportunities for the people of Pakistan, and considers the agricultural sector a critical priority,” Director Groarke said. “We are confident that our investments, in partnership with Government of Pakistan, will increase the linkages between Pakistani farmers and international markets to help promote a more prosperous, stable, and food secure nation.”
The AMD program was created to teach farmers the most up to date, efficient and environmentally sustainable techniques currently available. The program will also work to create trading hubs to close the gap between farmers, buyers, and sellers so Pakistani products can find their way to kitchen tables worldwide. With nearly 40 percent of Pakistanis employed in agriculture, and with almost 21 percent of the nation’s gross domestic product generated through agricultural industry, the initiative has the potential to increase sales and investments by more than $140 million.
USAID’s economic growth program has created over 23,000 jobs since 2012 and introduced new technologies and management practices to more than 118,000 farmers on 60,000 hectares. For more information on USAID economic growth and agriculture programs, visit:http://www.usaid.gov/pakistan/economic-growth-agriculture