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What is the importance of River Indus to Pakistan?

What is the importance of river Indus to its people with reference to agriculture and industries in Pakistan?

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The Indus River traces its source in Tibet at the meeting point of River Sengge and the Gar River. The rivers are responsible for draining the mountain ranges of Nganglong and Gangdise. The Shyok, Gilgit, Shigar streams and the Kabul River all join the Indus as it flows to the sea. The Indus completes its journey with a large delta east of Karachi. The Indus is the largest river which only flows through a country without having its source located in the same territorial boundaries.

The River plays an important role in providing water for agriculture especially in the breadbasket of Punjab and Sindh. The water from the river is crucial for food production because rainfall is unreliable especially in the lower parts of the Indus Valley. The Indus has also seen the construction of one of the most complicated irrigation systems in the world, covering large areas of Pakistan. Construction of dams has also helped in the production of electricity that plays an important role in powering Pakistan’s industries and towns.

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The Indus River has provided water to the people of the Pakistan centuries.  This water is used for irrigation on the plains of the Indus Valley and transportation of goods.  The management of this resource and the distribution has always been vital to the area, but it has also caused many problems.  Since Pakistan’s economy is based mainly on agriculture and related industry, and because most of Pakistan is arid or semi-arid, the Indus River System is vital to their growth and survival. "80% of Pakistan's 21.5 million hectares of farmland is irrigated from this river and the canals built from the river."   Without the water from the Indus River, the country would be in economic freefall within months.  Both India and China have built major damns on this river but so far the supply from the glaciers and tributaries has not harmed the Pakistani economy or irrigation.

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