Agriculture shows 6.25pc growth

Agriculture sector showcased significant strides, particularly evident in crop production sector which saw a notable 11.03% growth

By Israr Khan
June 12, 2024
In this picture taken on February 23, 2020, officials of the Agriculture Department on a tractor spray pesticides to kill locusts as a farmer works in a field in Pipli Pahar village in Punjab. — AFP

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s agriculture sector, hailed as the backbone of the economy and a primary source of livelihood for nearly two-fifths of its population, exhibited robust growth during the fiscal year 2023-24, registering an overall increase of 6.25 percent, as per the latest Pakistan Economic Survey 2023-24.


Contributing 24 percent to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and 37.4 percent to employment, the agriculture sector showcased significant strides, particularly evident in the crop production sector which saw a notable 11.03 percent growth, a marked improvement over the previous year.

Important crops experienced a substantial surge of 16.82 percent, indicating a solid recovery and significant production increase, while other crops recorded a modest growth of 0.90 percent, contributing to stability but not as significantly to overall growth.

Critical crops such as cotton, sugarcane, rice, maize, and wheat played pivotal roles in value addition to agriculture and GDP. Cotton production witnessed a remarkable increase of 108.2 percent to 10.22 million bales, while wheat production grew by 11.6 percent to 31.44 million tons. Rice production also surged by 34.8 percent to 9.87 million tons. However, sugarcane declined by 0.4 percent to 87.64 million tons, and maize declined by 10.4 percent to 9.85 million tons, partially attributed to crop switching.

Within the crops category, fruits, vegetables, and pulses played crucial roles in driving growth with respective increases of 8.40 percent, 5.77 percent, and 1.45 percent. Cotton ginning saw a remarkable 47.23 percent increase, reflecting a significant rebound from previous declines and boosting the overall crop sub-sector.

Livestock production maintained steady growth, increasing by 3.89 percent, slightly higher than the previous year, indicating sustained performance. However, forestry growth decelerated to 3.05 percent from a peak of 16.63 percent in the previous year, while fishing saw a modest increase of 0.81 percent.

In the livestock sector, animal husbandry emerged as a cornerstone, contributing around 60.84 percent of agricultural value added and 14.63 percent of national GDP during FY2024. The poultry sector, experiencing impressive growth averaging a remarkable 7.3 percent annual growth rate over the past decade, contributes significantly to gross meat production despite challenges like disease outbreaks and feed quality issues.

Forestry, accounting for 2.33 percent in agriculture, grew by 3.05 percent compared to 16.63 percent the previous year, while fishing, with a sectoral share of 1.3 percent, showed a growth of 0.81 percent compared to 0.6 percent in the prior year.