Pakistan Successful at Gulfood Convention

Image Credit: Usman Aslam from Pixabay

The Pakistani government recently announced a successful outing at the Gulfood Exhibition in Dubai. Muhammad Zubair Motiwala, the Chief Executive of the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan, stated that TDAP had “specifically focused on enhancing our food and food allied items, which is paying dividends in the form of substantial increase in our exports in this sector.” As such, Motiwala expects that “…exports of food items will cross $ 7 Billion by the end of this financial year, which is in sharp contrast to about $4 Billion annual exports in this sector.” 

This is good news for Pakistan, as most of its exports, outside of rice, are not food. According to the Observatory of Economic Complexity, they were textiles, including linens and knit sweaters. Some of Pakistan’s most popular agricultural exports include mutton, spices, and seafood; mangoes are also valuable, with Pakistan exporting 2.3 million tons of mangoes worldwide. 

The Gulfood Exhibition is an annual get-together of various agriculture industry sectors. This is a multinational event, with over 190 countries represented. The exhibitions include, among other things, restaurants, meat distributors, and food machinery. Gulfood is an opportunity for businesses and nations to promote their agricultural strengths on a global stage. 

This year, Pakistan featured 100 exhibitors, ranging from those sponsored by TDAP to those who sponsored their own trips. Motiwala believes that Pakistan’s presence at Gulfood contributes to Pakistan’s recent growth in agriculture, “I am delighted to share that the Pakistani participants have received unbelievably good response from potential importers and investors at the exhibition.” While there is no direct correlation, “…there is a remarkable increase of 300 to 400 % in the exports of sesame seeds this year. Exports of Pakistani rice will cross $ 3 Billion compared to about $ 1.5 Billion formerly,” according to Motiwala. 

With the conference coming to a close, it will be interesting to follow Pakistan’s continued economic growth in the agricultural sector.