ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has directed the ministries concerned to come with proposals for chalking out a comprehensive strategy to address the issue of malnutrition in the country.
Chairing a meeting on malnutrition in Pakistan and possible solutions held at the Prime Minister Office on Thursday, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi stressed that an integrated strategy needs to be implemented at the national level for which the political will was a must.
The Prime Minister assured that the federal government will extend its all out support in addressing the malnutrition issue in Pakistan and making our future generations healthy and productive.
The meeting was briefed on the nutrition situation in Pakistan in the context of under-nutrition and the losses resulting from reduced cognitive development in children and high mortality of women and children.
The meeting was further informed that malnutrition leads to non productivity, unemployment, poverty and crime at the national level.
The meeting observed that with the exception of few provinces, there was no integrated and mainstreamed strategy at the national level, and discussed various solutions to address malnutrition in the short as well as the long term.
In the short term, the meeting decided to devise a strategy to launch mandatory Food Fortification Strategy for staple foods. In the long term, various solutions were discussed for devising a comprehensive multi-sector nutrition strategy at the national level in consultation with all stakeholders.
The meeting further observed that there was a need for public awareness on this significant issue and media need to highlight this human issue through public interest messaging.
Provincial Minister for Labour Raja Ashfaq Sarwar, Senator Sadia Abbasi, Senator Nuzhat Sadiq, Ms. Saira Iftikhar (MPA), Dr. Aliya Aftab (MPA), Mr Ramesh Singh Arora (MPA), senior anchorpersons and analysts, nutrition experts and representatives of regional nutrition organizations and other senior government officials attended the meeting.—INP