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PM Khan launches Billion Tree Honey Initiative program

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ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan has formally launched the Billion Tree Honey Initiative to promote tree plantation and honey production in the country under the Ten Billion Tree Tsunami Programme (TBTTP).
Addressing the launching ceremony on Monday, the Prime Minister said that TBTTP will help control environmental degradation, including enhancing forest cover, cleaning rivers and protecting groundwater from pollution, and checking air pollution. He said that it is the responsibility of his government to hand over a clean Pakistan to younger generations.
The Prime Minister said that the Billion Tree Honey Initiative will also help improve the environment, enhance exports, and create job opportunities for the youth. He said that this initiative will benefit the local population of areas, where these forests will be grown.
Imran Khan said that Pakistan has great potential for growing olive and avocado trees. He said, “By olive plantation, we can be able to export olive oil and avoid import of edible oil.” He said that avocado is full of nutrition and Pakistan’s soil is very much suitable for its plantation. Imran Khan said that he has planted olive and avocado trees in his home garden.
Earlier, speaking on the occasion Minister of State for Climate Change Zartaj Gul said that TBTTP created around 84,000 jobs in the country while its scope will be enhanced in the coming days.
The minister of state said that efforts are being made to ensure effective monitoring, reporting and verification of the programme at all levels.
Prime Minister’s Special Assistant on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam said that the Billion Tree Honey programme will help enhance the country’s potential to produce 70,000 metric tons of honey in a year.
He said that under the programme bee keepers will be trained and through proper branding and ensuring quality certification the value of the country’s honey will be increased in the international market.
A memorandum of understanding (MoU) was also signed among various organisations to promote bee-keeping and tree plantation in the country.
According to the Billion Tree Honey Initiative, plantation of plants including Kao, Phulai, Ber, Kikar and other bee flora are being encouraged under TBTTP. A mechanism has been devised for encouraging promotion of bee flora, improving quality of honey production, providing livelihood to the beekeepers and sustaining the activity through provision of financial resources.
It is estimated that about 10,000 bee keepers are using 300,000 colonies for producing 7,500 metric tons of honey annually. The potential can be enhanced to produce 70,000 metric tons of honey from the same harvest by using modern bee keeping gears, training on latest techniques, standardisation and certification of the product and intensive marketing.
It is anticipated that marketing of 70,000 metric tons of honey will generate an income of around 43 billion rupees in the national economy and provide about 87,000 green jobs.
The existing forestry resource available in the protected areas and the new areas being planted and regenerated under TBTTP till 2022-23 is estimated to expand up to about 5.5 million hectares. The requisite forest resource shall be used by the bee keepers to produce honey specific to particular flora and shall be branded accordingly. The National Vocational and Technical Training Commission.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Imran Khan has urged all the political parties to ensure sanctity of the Parliament and uphold democratic values in the country.
Talking to Speaker National Assembly Asad Qaiser on Monday, the Prime Minister said that Parliament is the biggest constitutional and key institution of the country not only for legislation, but for the continuity of democracy as well.
The Prime Minister said that people always look towards their elected representatives for raising their voice in the parliament for resolution of their problems. He said that Parliament’s real strength lies in serving the masses and upholding the Constitution.
Views were also exchanged on the parliamentary system of the country during the meeting.
Earlier, Speaker National Assembly (NA) Asad Qaiser had urged opposition parties to show some sanctity for the upper house of the Parliament, Senate. He was talking to Chairman Senate Sadiq Sanjrani. Both the lawmakers had expressed their resolve to further strengthen relations and cooperation between the two houses.
Both the Qaiser and Sanjrani had expressed satisfaction over the legislation and smooth running of parliamentary affairs between upper and lower houses. – TLTP