KARACHI: Representatives of the Pakistan Poultry Association (PPA) on Tuesday warned of a significant increase in prices of poultry products if the government did not provide immediate relief to the industry that had been crippled by floods.

“We have incurred losses of billions of rupees in the devastating floods, which damaged 70 per cent of the farms and associated assets,” PPA-Southern region senior vice chairman Ghulam Khaliq told a press conference at the Karachi Press Club.

The government, instead of providing relief to farmers, had imposed sales tax on the raw material used for manufacturing poultry feed and medicines last month, which led to an increase of 60pc in their prices, he regretted.

“Besides, the poultry business is also being adversely affected by a steep rise in electricity rates and fuel prices. In this situation, there is all likelihood for a significant increase in poultry products,” he said, while calling upon the government to immediately announce relief measures for the industry.

Sharing another concern, PPA vice chairman Salman Munir said that the Sindh government had refused renewal of land lease to farmers.

“This government step may force closure of many farms located in the interior parts of Sindh as well as in the suburbs of Karachi,” he said.

Highlighting poultry losses, they said that the floods caused the death of 300,000 to 350,000 birds in Lasbela alone.

The farms across Sindh suffered huge losses especially those located in Dadu, Qambar Shahdadkot, Naushahro Feroze, Hyderabad, parts of Tando Allahyar and Tando Muhammad Khan.

The PPA representatives demanded that the government compensate farmers’ losses, defer imposition of sales tax on the raw material of poultry feed and medicines for at least six months, ban export of corn (a raw material for poultry feed), lower electricity rate and renew land lease for another 99 years.

PPA members Javed Aslam, Lal Bux Kolachi, Allah Bux and Fahad Waseem also spoke.

Published in Dawn, September 14th, 2022

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