Self-reliance Policy in Edible Oil and the Social Profitability of Pakistan's Oilseed Crops

Amir Mahmood, M. Ghaffar Chaudhry


Like many other South Asian countries the advent of the green
revolution has led to increased productivity of many cash and food crops
in Pakistan and a noticeable movement towards food-sufficiency,
especially in case of wheat. One unintended outcome of these
achievements has been the neglect of the oilseed and edible oil sector
at all levels of research and government. With a widening in the edible
oil deficit, Pakistan has become increasingly dependent on imported
edible oils. At an annual average growth rate of9.6 percent, Pakistan's
edible oil imports have risen from 466.94 million kg. in 1980-81 to
1045.95 million kg. in 1991-92. By contrast the import costs during this
period have risen from Rs 2.62 billion to Rs 10.2 billion showing an
annual growth rate of nearly 13 percent. This unhappy state of affairs
has been the result of not only of the rapidly accelerating pace of
edible oil demand but also of deceleration in the growth rate of
domestic production [Government of Pakistan (1992)].

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