THE PAKISTAN DEVELOPMENT REVIEW
Intra-sectoral and Intersectoral Parity Issues in Pricing of Agricultural Crops: A Preliminary Analysis
Intersectoral terms of trade play a cruc1al role in determining the sectoral distribution of income and resource allocation in the developing countries. The significance of intra-sectoral terms of trade for the allocation of resources within the agricultural sector is also widely accepted by research scholars and policy-makers. In the context of planned development, the government specifies production targets for the agricultural sector and for different crops. The intervention of government in the field of price determination has important implications for the achievement of planned targets. In Pakistan, there is a feeling among many groups including farmers and politicians with a rural background that prices of agricultural crops have not kept their parities intact over time and that prices generally do not cover the costs of production. The feeling that production incentives for agriculture have been eroded is especially strong for the period since the early 1970s. It is argued that strong inflationary pressures supported by a policy of withdrawal of government subsidies on agricultural inputs have resulted in rapid increases in the prices paid by agriculturists and that increases in the prices received by farmers were not enough to compensate them for the rising prices of agricultural inputs and consumption goods.