Indo-Israel vegetable centre in Assam
Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Monday laid the foundation stone of a Rs 10.33 crore Indo-Israeli Centre of Excellence for Vegetables Protected Cultivation at Khetri on the outskirts of Guwahati in the presence of Israeli Ambassador to India Dr Ron Malka.
The project is expected to boost the state’s agricultural sector by providing exposure to latest Israeli technologies that help the farmers maximise their production and economic returns.
“The Centre will help develop the horticulture sector, right from plantation to marketing, through knowledge sharing between Israel and Assam,” said an official.
Sonowal said the centre would be a value addition to the government’s efforts to double farmers’ income through infusion of technology in agriculture, agribusiness and food processing, a government statement said.
Asserting that due to the positive interventions by his government, Assam’s annual production of food grain, fruits and vegetables has significantly increased in recent years.
“Our farmers have now been able to export fruits and vegetables to places like Dubai, London, Bangkok, Abu Dhabi and several others international destinations. The Central government’s plan to make Northeast India an organic hub. We have also taken several initiatives in this regard,” Sonowal said.
The northeast has benefitted with “substantial improvement” in air, road and river connectivity under the Narendra Modi government and is now seen as a promising destination for cultural exchange, trade and commerce, travel and tourism, Sonowal said.
He said with cooperation of Israel would help Assam’s farmers and entrepreneurs grow at a much faster pace.
Dr Malka underlined the close friendship between India and Israel where both countries complement each other, the government statement said.
Even in the fight against Covid-19 pandemic, both India and Israel fought against the virus together, he said, while welcoming Assam into the “Indo-Israel partnership dynamics” with the opening of Centre of Excellence on Monday.