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Saturday April 20, 2024

SIFC, Saudi firm ink agreement for high-quality fodder cultivation

Pakistan signs agreement with KSA’s Najd Gateway Holding Company to cultivate 5,000 acres of cattle fodder

By Web Desk
March 18, 2024
Cultivation of cattle fodder in Pakistan in this still taken from a video. — SIFC/Radio Pakistan
Cultivation of cattle fodder in Pakistan in this still taken from a video. — SIFC/Radio Pakistan

Pakistan and Saudi Arabia have taken a step forward to enhance bilateral cooperation in the livestock sector as the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC), and Najd Gateway Holding Company signed an agreement to “cultivate 5,000 acres of alfalfa cattle fodder” for export purposes.

The new pact was signed for cultivation of fodder — major source of protein for livestock, and is also a staple diet for dairy cattle, beef, horses, sheep, goats and other domestic animals — which would be exported, according to Radio Pakistan.

Pakistani soil has great potential for breeding high-quality livestock products with high nutritional and protein content, the statement read, adding: “This crop is cultivated in many countries of the world and is considered as a fodder crop of great importance.”

The SIFC, a hybrid forum being jointly run by the civilian and military top brass, is operating as a dynamic “Single Window” platform to attract foreign investments by creating eases in complex business processes, and avoiding inordinate delays.

The council’s core purpose was also providing a central forum to the stakeholders for undertaking cross-sectoral reforms and developing an enabling policy environment, necessary to improve the investment ecosystem besides elevating awareness of Pakistan’s untapped potential.

The fodder cultivation agreement was also a step forward in investment in Pakistan worth $25 billion each pledged by Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in September 2023.

Prior to this agreement, Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman reaffirmed Saudi Arabia's support for Pakistan in a congratulatory phone call with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif following his assumption of the premier's office earlier this month.

During the telephonic conversation, MBS felicitated the premier on his re-election, responding to which PM Shehbaz thanked him for the phone call and the warm message of greetings sent by him immediately after he had assumed the office.

In another development this month, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), owing to its longstanding brotherly relations with Pakistan, launched a gift programme provisioning distribution high quality dates translating to 30,000 individual gifts to the people during the holy month of Ramadan.

The programme’s implementation comes following the follow-up of the Minister of Islamic Affairs, Dawah and Guidance Sheikh Dr Abdullatif bin Abdulaziz Al-Sheikh.

The brotherly countries enjoy strong state-level relations in diverse sectors, including trade, and defence. Riyadh helped Islamabad in tough times to help Pakistan stabilising its economy amid severel crisis by offering direct financial assistance, as well as provision of oil on deferred payment facilities.