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Agricultural Statistics of Pakistan 1988-89.

Agricultural Statistics of Pakistan 1988-89

The Federal Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Cooperatives brings out an annual publication "Agricultural Statistics of Pakistan". The publication under review pertains to the year 1988-89. It appears to be somewhat different from the preceding ones and contains some improvements. Agricultural statistics of various types have been classified into 11 parts and in all there are 182 statistical tables. Classified 11 parts of the publication are: a) Area, production and yield of important crops; b) Land use and area irrigated by sources; c) Inputs; d) Credit; e) Mechanization; f) Livestock; g) Fisheries; h) Forestry; i) wTrade; j)Prices; and k) Miscellaneous.

Besides Index of Agricultural Production based on 1980-81 has been given in the beginning. An important improvement in this publication over the preceding ones is that a brief analysis of each table has been given before the start of the statistical tables. The analysis briefly shows the production and other trends in recent past, locational (Province-wise) distribution and contributory factors. Such analysis helps research workers, if they are engaged in agricultural and economic research.

Production and area of major and minor crops are shown in the first section. In addition, comparative area, production and yield per hectare of some major crops have been given about 8/9 different countries including Pakistan. These tables show that Pakistan holds important positions in the world in case of some crops, particularly seed cotton and sugarcane although much improvement is needed in their yields per hectare. Following table shows Pakistan's ranking in area, production and yield per hectare among selected countries:

Pakistan's Ranking among Selected Countries in Area,
 Production and Yield per Hectare in 1987-88
 Total No. Pakistan's Ranking in
Crops of Countries Area Production Yield
Wheat 8 6 6 8
Rice (Paddy) 9 7 8 8
Maize 9 7 9 7
Seed Cotton 9 3 3 6
Sugarcane 7 3 3 7
Tobacco 10 8 9 5
Groundnuts 8 8 8 7
Soyabean 6 6 6 6


The period covered in case of production of crops is from 1975-76 to 1988-89. Some significant improvements took place in the production and yield per hectare of several crops. However, it is a matter of some anxiety that there is disappointing trend in the output of those crops for which the country depends on imports, and rapid increase is needed to cut down foreign exchange expenditure. These crops, in addition to wheat and other food crops, are jute, traditional and non-traditional oilseeds and pulses. The year 1988-89 was most disappointing in case of these crops. Land utilization statistics show three major aspects of agricultural operations, namely:

i) Land utilization upto 1987-88 (incomplete), ii) Distribution of Cropped Area, and iii) Area irrigated by different sources.

In cropped area there has been a long-term increase but it is still fluctuating. There has been some increase in area under forests although still much below the desired level. Some improvement has also been noted in area under irrigation although fluctuations are there. Distribution of cropped area among various crops shows that food crops are increasing their share in total area at the cost of other crops.

In Section C, Inputs 18 tables cover distribution of improved seeds, consumption, production and import of fertilizers and subsidy, water availability, rainfall at selected stations, area covered by plant protection measures and important and consumption of pesticides. Some improvement has occurred over the long-term between 1979-80 and 1987-88 in the use of the improved seens but the fluctuations are there and in 1987-88, it was 79,890 tonnes against 86,390 tonnes in 1984-85.

Distribution of Area among Various Crops 1975-76 and 1988-89
 (000 hectares)
 1 9 7 5 - 7 6 1 9 8 8 - 8 9
Crops Area % Share Area % Share
Foodgrains 9,726 54 11,737 56
Cash Crops 2,609 14 3,551 17
Pulses 1,476 8 1,395 7
Oilseeds 562 3 469 2
Vegetables 150 1 262 1
Condiments 87 1 133 1
Fruits 235 1 445 2
Others 3,175 18 2,908 14
 TOTAL:- 18,020 100 20,900 100


Similar trend has been observed in case of the consumption of chemical fertilizers. In 1987-88 about 1.72 million nutrient tonnes were used and in 1988-89 1.74 million nutrient tonnes against 1.78 million n/tonnes in 1986-87. It may be due to gradual withdrawal of subsidy on the distribution of fertilizers and rise in their prices. Significant improvement has occurred in the use of fertilizer (per hectare) in Pakistan between 1970-71 and 1986-87. It increased from only 15 kg per hectare in 1970-71 to 83 kg in 1986-87. However, Pakistan in 1986-87 was ahead of India only and her position was very low as compared to some other countries as shown below:

Fertilizer Consumption Per Hectare in Selected Countries 1970-71 & 1986-87
 (Kg kper hectare)
Countries 1970-71 1986-87
Netherlands 749 688
Japan 384 433
Egypt 122 351
USSR 40 182
India 13 54
Pakistan 15 83


Withdrawal of subsidy and rise in the prices of fertilizer should have hit the farmers badly. In 7 years, from end of 1982 to end of 1989, the price of a bag of DAP fertilizer increased from Rs. 105 to Rs. 203, or almost 100 per cent. Imports of pesticides have increased but very unfortunately, the farmer has been discouraged by increase in their prices. In 1973-74, 6474 tonnes of imported pesticides cost the country slightly over Rs. 171 million. In 1988-89 11,326.5 tonnes cost Rs. 1383 million. While the quantum increased by 75 per cent, value jumped by about 709 per cent. Another drawback of the country is that she does produce pesticides herself.

Agricultural credit shows sharp long-term expansion between 1971-72 and 1987-88, when it increased from Rs. 128 million only to Rs. 15434 million but credit advanced in 1987-88 was less than in 1986-87. Since 1st July 1988, loans which were previously provided interest-free are now being provided at 7 per cent mark-up. Mechanization of agriculture is proceeding fast. In addition to tubewells, surface pumps and tractors, a large number of modern implements are being used in agriculture. At the end of June 1988 there were 288,453 tubewells. In private sector, there were 211,430 tubewells and 13,131 surface pumps. Upto the end of June 1989,328,606 tractors had been imported. Some of these should have gone out of service.

The section of livestock shows the number of livestock heads, poultry birds and their products and by-products. With the exception of poultry no advance has been made in Pakistan although she has some of the world's best species of milk cattle and buffaloes. Lack of proper management and shrinking grazing grounds are the main reasons. The country is short of milk, milk products and meat and meat products. Some progress has been made in fish catch although much remains to be done. Production increased from 174,100 metric tons in 1975 to 445,400 in 1988. The improvement has been more pronounced in case of inland fisheries production of which increased from 20,000 tonnes to 96,500 tonnes during the same period.

Other sections are also very useful. The publication is of considerable importance to researchers of economics and agricultural economics, businessmen, importers and exporters of agricultural commodities and Government officials. However, one can suggest the following additions in future editions.

1. List of Government institutions, research and others, Federal and Provincial dealing with agriculture; 2. Expenditure being incurred on research and development of agriculture.

Pakistan's Ranking among Selected Countries in Area, Production and Yield per Hectare in 1987-88
 Total No. Pakistan's Ranking in
Crops of Countries Area Production Yield
Wheat 8 6 6 8
Rice (Paddy) 9 7 8 8
Maize 9 7 9 7
Seed Cotton 9 3 3 6
Sugarcane 7 3 3 7
Tobacco 10 8 9 5
Groundnuts 8 8 8 7
Soyabean 6 6 6 6


Distribution of Area among Various Crops 1975-76 and 1988-89
 (000 hectares)
 1975 - 76 1988 - 89
Crops Area % Share Area % Share
Foodgrains 9,726 54 11,737 56
Cash Crops 2,609 14 3,551 17
Pulses 1,476 8 1,395 7
Oilseeds 562 3 469 2
Vegetables 150 1 262 1
Condiments 87 1 133 1
Fruits 235 1 445 2
Others 3,175 18 2,908 14
 Total:- 18,020 100 20,900 100
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Author:Khan, Abdul Majid
Publication:Economic Review
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Jul 1, 1990
Words:1394
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