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Humshehri: Thinking Pakistan's History

Thinking Pakistan's History

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Economy

Urdu Version

Along with growing fruits and vegetables, Khyber Pakhtunhwa’s economy also relies on tobacco production.

Last Updated: 27 Jan. 2014


Agriculture and industry both play an important role in the economy of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK).


kpk eco
Tobacco field
(Henry Kotowski)

Agriculture is an important sector ofKPK’s economy, not just in monetary terms but also in terms of employment. However, only 30% of KPK’s land is cultivable. Major field crops of KPK include cereals (wheat, maize, barley, rice and millet), gram, sugarcane and tobacco, and major horticulture crops include apples, potatoes and tomatoes. In 2011-12, KPK produced 4.4% of the national output of wheat, 20.2% of maize, 18.6% of barley, 1.3% of rice, 0.6% of millet, 3.4% of gram, 8% of sugarcane, and 83% of tobacco. In fact, more than 75% of Pakistan’s tobacco is grown in KPK. Raising livestock is also a major source of income.


By 2012, there were approximately 1,821 industrial units that were running in KPK. Major industries include canning and preservation of fruits and vegetables, manufacturing and refining of sugar, cotton textiles, cement, furniture, and tobacco processing. Mineral production also contributes to the economy of KPK. Limestone, marble, rock salt and gypsum are a few of the major minerals mined.

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Books & Articles

Ikram, Khalid. Economic Development – A View from the Provinces. Working paper no. 01-09. Lahore: Lahore School of Economics, 2009.

Pakistan – Northwest Frontier Province Economic Report: Accelerating Growth and Improving Public Service Delivery in the NWFP – the Way Forward. Rep. Islamabad: World Bank, 2005.


Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Bureau of Statistics: Publications