LAHORE Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has said development of livestock sector can help eliminate poverty and unemployment, and the Punjab government is implementing an effective strategy for this purpose. Granting approval to the proposal of setting up Milk and Meat Safety Agency for the improvement of livestock sector, he directed that a draft law should be prepared for this purpose, and this agency should be completely autonomous and free from the interference of bureaucracy. He was presiding over a meeting regarding measures for the improvement of livestock sector here on Thursday. Minister Agriculture Malik Ahmad Ali Aulakh, Chairman Planning & Development, Secretary Finance, Managing Director Lahore Meat Company and senior officers of livestock department were present on the occasion. Secretary Livestock Jehanzeb Khan gave a detailed briefing regarding the measures for improvement of livestock sector. The CM observed there was a vast scope for the development of livestock and dairy farming sector and had a solid strategy been adopted for this purpose in the past, the situation would have been different. Development of livestock sector can not only help eliminate poverty and unemployment from rural areas, but exports can also be increased for strengthening national economy, he said, adding that the Punjab government was taking solid measures for the uplift of livestock sector. He hoped that setting up of Milk and Meat Safety Agency would provide access to foreign markets resulting in substantial betterment of livestock sector. He directed that while taking measures for livestock development it should be ensured that maximum facilities should become available to poor cultivators. He also directed that comprehensive recommendations should be presented for the improvement of Veterinary Research Institute, keeping all aspects in view. Expressing dissatisfaction over the performance of livestock farms, he described it as extremely poor. He said these farms were a precious asset and recommendations should be presented to him for their improvement. Earlier, Jehanzeb Khan gave details of the measures taken for the uplift of livestock sector and future strategy for this purpose.