ISLAMABAD - Clay Hamilton Agriculture Counselor (USDA) said that USA and Pakistan have long history of collaboration in agriculture and it will continue to provide support for improvement of wheat productivity in Pakistan.

This he sated at inaugural session of two-day Annual Wheat Planning/ Wheat Productivity Enhancement Program (W-PEP) Meeting at NARC which was jointly organised by PARC- USDA - CIMMYT & ICARDA with the objective to review the progress make in wheat research and develop work plan for 2013-14.

Clay showed his satisfaction over the work done in W-PEP Project. WPEP programme is mainly aimed at developing UG-99 resistant wheat varieties, seed and better production technologies to improve wheat productivity in Pakistan.

Dr Shahid Masood, Member (PSD) PARC highlighted the role of PARC in coordination and research. He said their coordinated wheat programme is one of the more successful coordinated programmes in the country. He welcomed the participants of meeting who traveled from all over the country to participate in meeting.

Dr. Imtiaz Muhammad from CIMMYT briefed the participants about W-PEP achievement during last 3 years in Pakistan. Under this programme, research equipments, machinery and training has been provided to Wheat Research Institutes in Pakistan. Its success included release of UG-99 wheat varieties such as NARC-2011.

Dr Abdul Majeed from ICARDA briefed about the achievements in seed and agri. demonstrations and seed production of UG-99 resistant wheat varieties that has been done on large scale. The trials have showed that new technologies like relay cropping of wheat in cotton, ridge planting in irrigated wheat and introduction of legume in different cropping system like rice-wheat and rainfed cropping system can improve the wheat productivity.

Dr Muhammad Azeem Khan, DG NARC highlighted the role of seed in wheat productivity.

He shared the information on different wheat seed system of Pakistan.

Director General, FSC&RD also briefed the participants regarding the role of this organization in seed provision and certification. He stressed the need for enhanced collaboration among researchers, seed sector and FSC& RD.