Agriculture and the Rural Economy in Pakistan

Agriculture and the Rural Economy in Pakistan
Issues, Outlooks, and Policy Priorities

Edited by David J. Spielman, Sohail J. Malik, Paul Dorosh, and Nuzhat Ahmad

560 pages | 6 x 9 | 65 illus.
Cloth 2016 | ISBN 9780812249378 | $79.95s | Add to cart || Outside USA | £69.00
Ebook Jan 2017 | ISBN 9780812294217 | $79.95s | £52.00 | Add to cart || About
Published for the International Food Policy Research Institute
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"The book Agriculture and the Rural Economy in Pakistan: Issues, Outlooks, and Policy Priorities successfully traces the historical evolution of public policy on food security, agriculture, and the rural economy in Pakistan and provides a detailed analysis of the factors underlying the multidimensional nature of the current situation. The research-based insights and recommendations contained in this book are invaluable for researchers and policy makers in Pakistan. This book is a fine example of the International Food Policy Research Institute's mission to support countries with relevant policy research for effective decision making."—Sartaj Aziz, Ministry of Foreign Affairs

"This book has analyzed the challenges and evolution of the rural economy in impressive depth and breadth. The policy research reported in this book is relevant, actionable, practicable, tangible, and implementable and fully supports the vision of a prosperous Pakistan. I congratulate IFPRI, its Pakistan team, and all the researchers involved for putting together a detailed analysis of the agriculture sector and its role in the economy of Pakistan."—Ahsan Iqbal, Pakistan's Planning Commission

"Food insecurity is one of the most alarming problems facing developing countries today. It is also one of the most complex. Evidence-based policy research that can positively influence decision making to address this issue is the need of the hour. Fortunately, Agriculture and the Rural Economy in Pakistan: Issues, Outlooks, and Policy Priorities, published by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), meets this need by not only exposing the problem at hand but also offering solutions. This book is invaluable for Pakistan as it provides fresh insights into how agriculture and rural development can lead to rapid economic growth, food security, and poverty reduction."—Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan, federal minister for food security and research

"Pakistan's Indus River basin is an extraordinary agricultural resource. This book documents how, when used properly with large investments and appropriate policies, agriculture brought rapid overall growth and poverty reduction. The wide-ranging, perceptive, quantitative, and qualitative analysis of this book has detailed, essential lessons, not only for Pakistan itself, but for all the stalled agricultural economies of much of Africa and select countries in Asia as well."—John W. Mellor, Cornell University

Historically, agriculture has been crucial to Pakistan's economic growth and development and remains so even today. The sector employs almost half of the country's labor force, supplies key inputs to the country's manufacturing sector, generates a significant share of export earnings, and nourishes a rapidly growing population. Further, beyond agriculture is the wider rural economy, including nonfarm economic activities such as small enterprises, transport services, village retail shops, local schools, and clinics, all of which account for an estimated 40 to 57 percent of total rural household income.

Given the importance of these rural activities, the slow growth of agriculture in recent years—averaging just 2.8 percent during the period 2010-2014—should be a source of concern for Pakistan. Can the country's agricultural sector and rural economy once again play a significant role in growth and development? Can it contribute to poverty reduction?

Agriculture and the Rural Economy in Pakistan: Issues, Outlooks, and Policy Priorities seeks to answer these questions by examining the performance of both agriculture and the rural economy. The authors identify several measures that can promote agricultural productivity growth as well as wider economic and social development. These include increasing the efficiency of water use in the Indus river basin irrigation system, especially in the face of climate change; reforming policies and regulations that govern markets for agricultural inputs and commodities; and improving the provision of rural public services for health, education, women's empowerment, and community development. The analyses and conclusions in Agriculture and the Rural Economy in Pakistan will be of use to policy makers, development specialists, and others concerned with Pakistan's development.

Contributors: Madiha Afzal, Nuzhat Ahmad, Faryal Ahmed, Mubarik Ali, Shujat Ali, Elena Briones Alonso, Hira Channa, Stephen Davies, Paul Dorosh, Gisselle Gajate Garrido, Arthur Gueneau, Madeeha Hameed, Brian Holtemeyer, Huma Khan, Katrina Kosec, Mehrab Malek, Sohail J. Malik, Shuaib Malik, Amina Mehmood, Dawit Mekonnen, Hina Nazli, Sara Rafi, Muhammad Ahsan Rana, Abdul Wajid Rana, Danielle Resnick, Khalid Riaz, Abdul Salam, Emily Schmidt, Asma Shahzad, David J. Spielman, James Thurlow, Ahmad Waqas, Edward Whitney, Fatima Zaidi.

David J. Spielman is a senior research fellow in the Environment and Production Technology Division of the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Washington, DC.

Sohail J. Malik was a visiting senior research fellow in the Development Strategy and Governance Division of IFPRI, Washington, DC, at the time he contributed to this book. He is currently the chairman of Innovative Development Strategies (Pvt.) Ltd., Pakistan, in Islamabad.

Paul Dorosh is the director of the Development Strategy and Governance Division of IFPRI, Washington, DC.

Nuzhat Ahmad was senior research fellow in the Development Strategy and Governance Division of IFPRI, Washington, DC, at the time she contributed to this book. She is currently the owner and CEO of Capstone Consulting International in Karachi, Pakistan.

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