A delegation of the dairy sector of Ireland visited Sukkur Chamber of Commerce & Industry (SCCI) and showed interest to explore investment opportunities in Pakistan’s dairy sector. The representatives of the Board of Investment of Pakistan also accompanied the Irish delegation.
Addressing the delegation, Ahsan Zafar Bakhtawari, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry said that Pakistan’s dairy sector plays an important role in the national economy as its value is more than the combined value of major wheat and cotton cash-crops. He said that Pakistan is the 5th top milk producer in the world as it produces over 65 million tonnes of milk every year. However, due to lack of modern technology and best practices, over 95 percent of milk remains unprocessed due to which the country is losing huge economic value of this product.
Ahsan Bakhtawari said that Irish investors should bring modern technology and expertise to Pakistan and invest in the dairy sector, which will enable them to export value-added milk products around the world. He said that investment of Irish investors in Pakistan’s dairy sector would bring about a revolution in the lives of millions of people whose livelihood are directly linked to this sector and bring prosperity to rural Pakistan. He was of the view that increasing the processing of milk up to 15-20 percent from the current level of less than 5 percent would help Pakistan overcome its economic challenges and emerge as a growing economy. He assured that SCCI would fully cooperate in connecting them with right partners in Pakistan.
Speaking on the occasion, the members of the Irish delegation said that Pakistan has huge potential in the dairy sector. They said that Ireland has advanced technology and expertise in the dairy sector as it exports over €5 billion of dairy products every year, which are known for their quality and standards. They said that they are keen to explore investment opportunities in Pakistan’s dairy sector as the cost of shipping dairy products from Ireland to this part of the world is quite huge. They said that they can educate Pakistani farmers in herd management, quality milk production and value addition of milk products. The dairy industry is a key component of the Ireland’s economy providing €16 billion of economic value and around 85,000 jobs, with much needed employment focused in rural areas.
Faad Waheed, Senior Vice President SCCI said that the average milk yield of a cow is less than 14 litres per day in Pakistan as against the global standards of 30 litres. He said by setting up modern dairy plants in Pakistan, Irish investors can export value-added dairy products to many parts of the world and they should take full advantage of this untapped potential.