18th October 2012, New Delhi
“Several ASEAN member states enjoy excellent agro-climatic conditions suitable for production of the commodities that India imports in large quantity. Similarly, India can be an important source for many of the commodities imported by ASEAN member states. I am, therefore, of the view that member countries can be benefited if we explore the complementarities and align our agricultural productions and trade policies to encourage greater bilateral trade in agro commodities”, said Shri Harish Rawat, Minister of State for Agriculture, Food Processing Industries & Parliamentary Affairs, Government of India.
He was inaugurating Symposium on ‘Indo-ASEAN Export Potential of Agriculture Products- Growth Potential and Way Forward’ concurrently organized with ongoing 2nd ASEAN-India Ministerial Meeting on Agriculture & Forestry (17-19th October 2012). While elaborating upon agricultural education, research and extension strength of ICAR, he suggested to utilize this valuable resource for the betterment of our agricultural sector and bring greater happiness for our farmers, consumers and industry.
Shri Abhijit Sen, Member, Planning Commission and Guest of Honor of the occasion traced back the economic cooperation in the ASEAN region and expressed satisfaction over growth of trade between India and ASEAN countries. I hope that the leaders, policy planners and traders gathered here will deliberate on the bottle-necks, challenges and issues which are hampering trade. A road map must be devised and designed to accelerate the agri-trade between India and ASEAN countries, he added.
HE Dr. Rusman Heriawan, Vice Minister of Agriculture, Indonesia appreciated India and its economic growth while delivering special address. ASEAN is looking for strong economic cooperation with India for mutual benefits for the prosperity of the region, he said.
Mr. Xaypladeth Choulamany, Director General, Department of Planning and Cooperation, Laos PDR in his special address emphasized the growing need of mutual cooperation among ASEAN nations and India in trade, agriculture and other sectors.
Mr. Ashwin Shroff, Chairman, CII National Sub-Committee on Agri-Biotechnology & Chairman and Managing Director, Excel Industries Ltd made a presentation on ‘Export Potential of Agriculture Produce’ in which he elaborated challenges and suggested way outs.
Earlier, Dr. S. Ayyappan, Secretary, DARE and Director General, Indian Council of Agricultural Research welcomed the dignitaries and hoped that deliberations in the symposium will help identify mutual areas of cooperation and the related challenges.
Deliberations will take place under four technical sessions with experts on the panel. Representatives of the ASEAN nations and ASEAN Secretariat, Senior Officials of DARE/ICAR and representatives of CII and industries are participating in the symposium.
Mr. D. Sengupta, Senior Advisor, CII proposed vote of thanks.
(Source: NAIP Mass Media Project, DKMA)