By Ajmal Khan Yousafzai
ISLAMABAD: Ministry of National Food Security and Research Syed Fakhar Imam on Thursday appreciates the efforts of the Korean mission in Pakistan for establishing Korea Program on International Agriculture (KOPIA) Center at National Agriculture Research Center.
While talking to Kwak Sung-Kyu, Ambassador of the Republic of Korea who along with Dr Cho Gyoung-rae, newly appointed Director, KOPIA Pakistan Centre called on him, the minister said Republic of Korea was one of the most trusted friend of Pakistan.
Syed Fakhar Imam said that KOPIA Centreâ€™s cooperative projects and activities includes technology development projects related to agriculture and livestock which aim to increase incomes of smallholder farm households. He said KOPIA would help in exchange of research materials, publications and technical information, besides technology development activities of Korean experts and scientists to promote and develop local agriculture sector.
He informed that Pakistan attaches great importance to its relations with the Republic of Korea and signing of agreement between Pakistan Agriculture Research Council and its counterpart Rural Development Administration RDA-Korea will promote cooperation in the field of agricultural research. The minister also welcomed the appointment of Dr Cho Gyoung-rae as Director KOPIA Pakistan Centre and assure him full support and cooperation from Pakistan side.
Fakhar Imam thanked financial assistance by the Korean Government of US$ 400,000 to control the locust plague in Pakistan as it provided assistance to control the locust plague via United Nations World Food Program (WFP) and Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
It may be recalled here that the RDA-Korea launched the Korea Program on International Agriculture (KOPIA) in 2009 to share the Korean experiences and knowledge. Korean Embassy in Pakistan indicated that Pakistan can also take benefit of KOPIA and MinNFS&R also expressed its intention to join KOPIA.