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Locust Attack in Pakistan: Assessing and Dealing with the Threat

Journal: Policy Perspectives (Vol.18, No. 1)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 109-121

Keywords : Locusts; Pakistan; COVID-19; Outbreak; Food Security; Pandemic.;

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The recent locust attack in Pakistan is a grave threat to food security during the pandemic of Covid-19. The government was cognizant of the threat and made strategies to overcome it. The phenomenon, however, is neither new nor over. The risk to the food security is very real and needs a cross disciplinary approach to understand the phenomenon, a transnational synergy to monitor, prevent, and control the outbreaks, and a global effort to train and equip the developing nations against the threat. Pakistan needs to remain vigilant and alert in order to monitor the internal breeding grounds in Balochistan, Sindh and Punjab, and to keep an eye on the transnational movement of the insects that might enter Pakistan. It also needs to strategize the effort through sustained national cohesion and by taking all the stakeholders onboard. This paper examines the recent locust attack and the government's response towards it. It further analyzes the threats to food security and the government strategies to be adopted. The consequences of such incidents for Pakistan in future would be disastrous in the absence of policies and in view of the unstable national economy. The locust attacks would not only pose a threat to food security; they would cause reduction in exports and necessitate import of food products. This will ultimately disturb the balance of payments, resulting in more loans. The paper aims to provide possible policy recommendations to deal with such threats, institutional arrangements, and strategies that may be workable at the micro and macro levels.

Last modified: 2021-10-30 03:59:52