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Letter to President Ayub Khan on Problems of Agricultural Productivity in Pakistan.

September 24, 1962

[Released September 24, 1962. Dated September 21, 1962]

Dear Mr. President:

I am pleased to write that, after intensive study and analysis of the problems of water-logging and salinity in West Pakistan, the United States scientific team which I appointed last fall has drafted a comprehensive report. As you know, Dr. Jerome B. Wiesner, my Special Assistant for Science and Technology, assembled a panel of specialists covering a broad range of knowledge and experience in agriculture, hydrology, engineering, and the economic and social sciences. We also enlisted the interest of Mr. Stewart Udall, my Secretary of the Interior, and of his Science Adviser, Dr. Roger Revelle, who has headed this Panel and has participated with great dedication in an extensive analysis of the problems. The solution of the problems of low agricultural productivity and waterlogging and salinity in West Pakistan requires efforts of unprecedented proportions. The most far-reaching conclusion of the Panel has been that waterlogging and salinity must be attacked within the context of a broad approach toward a large and rapid increase in agricultural productivity. This can be done by an integrated application of all the factors of agricultural production, combined with sustained human effort and sufficient capital investment to attain momentum in improvement. The Panel's primary recommendation to achieve these goals is a reorientation of the strategy to concentrate efforts on limited project areas, each roughly a million acres in size, so as to permit a coordinated attack on all aspects of the agricultural problem. In total, this becomes an ambitious program, but one that is required to meet an exceedingly difficult set of problems.

In transmitting the Panel's report to you at this time, we wish to consider the Panel's product as still in draft form, subject to review and modification. We would like to have the reactions of your officials and experts-since the basic data utilized in the Panel's analysis depends so heavily on Pakistan sources--as well as further discussions among the members of our scientific team. In addition, it would be possible to send Dr. Roger Revelle and other members of the team to Pakistan at a time convenient to you for personal discussions of the Panel's findings with your people.

I share the enthusiasm and feeling the Panel has had on the problem and wish you well in your vital endeavors on behalf of the people of Pakistan.

With warm personal regards.

Sincerely yours,


[His Excellency Mohammad Ayub Khan, President of Pakistan, Rawalpindi, Pakistan]

Note: The "Draft Report of the White House-Interior Panel on Waterlogging and Salinlty in West Pakistan" was dated September 7, 1962 (539 PP., processed).

The President's letter was released at Newport, R.I.

John F. Kennedy, Letter to President Ayub Khan on Problems of Agricultural Productivity in Pakistan. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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