Australia to give grant for regional rural project

Updated February 18, 2020

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The Economic Affairs Division and Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) signed an agreement of 1.2 million Australian dollars for rural regional transformation project covering Pakistan, Bangladesh, China and Indonesia on Monday, according to a press release.
— File
The Economic Affairs Division and Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) signed an agreement of 1.2 million Australian dollars for rural regional transformation project covering Pakistan, Bangladesh, China and Indonesia on Monday, according to a press release. — File

ISLAMABAD: The Economic Affairs Division and Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) signed an agreement of 1.2 million Australian dollars for rural regional transformation project covering Pakistan, Bangladesh, China and Indonesia on Monday, according to a press release.

Acting Secretary Economic Affairs Division Ahmad Hanif Orakzai and Chief Executive Officer ACIAR Prof Andrew Campbell signed the subsidiary agreement on “understanding the drivers of successful and inclusive rural regional transformation and sharing experience and policy advice” on behalf of their respective governments.

The programme, to be completed in three years till 2022, is aimed at to understand the nature, divers and consequences of rural transformation in Bangladesh, China, Indonesia and Pakistan, stated the press release.

Rural transformation is the process by which an agricultural system transforms over time from being subsistence to commercialised and market-oriented farming. Many countries have reached different stages of rural transformation with varying speeds and outcomes of rural transformation.

The share of the population in rural areas remains high in China (43 per cent) and Indonesia (46 per cent) and even higher in Pakistan (61 per cent) and Bangladesh (65 per cent), while the average share for developing countries globally is 58 per cent.

However, expanding urbanisation is putting pressure on land, labour and other resources for higher productivity. The project will examine the Chinese model of rural transformation and understand the nature of its success and lessons for countries with similar challenges.

Published in Dawn, February 18th, 2020