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Engine Of Global Growth Is Shifting From West To East: Harsimrat Kaur Badal, Minister Of Food Processing Industries

Alounkeo Kittikhoum, Minister to the Prime Minister’s Office, Lao People's Democratic Republic said that the country hopes that India can help the ASEAN countries in improving agricultural productivity, enhancing farmers’ income and sharing of farm technology

India has been witnessing an act east policy which is a step forward to its look east policy. Speaking at ASEAN India business and investment expo, the food processing minister of India has pitched for Indian food processing industry.

“There is no doubt that the engine of growth, globally is shifting from the west to east,” said Harsimrat Kaur Badal, Minister of Food Processing Industries while speaking at the ASEAN India Business and Investment and Expo, Promoting Mutual Trade and Investment.

By 2020, the demand for food will increase by 20 per cent. To stop food wastage, we must ensure value-added food processing and India and ASEAN can play an important role in this, she said. Talking about the blue economy, she noted, “India has close to 7000 km of coastline and the Government has already put in funds for the development of the shoreline.”

ASEAN and India are part of the Indo-Pacific region and can take a lead in two very pertinent areas to ensure sustainability through specific efforts. These include Agriculture and the Blue Economy. Along with agriculture, sustainable exploitation of aquatic resources and co-operation potential for exploiting ocean energy are among key areas for collective progress.

Michael Williamson, Head of Office (Acting), Sub-regional Office for South and South-West Asia, UNESCAP said that it is important to recognize the concept of the blue economy as it will help in forming a more holistic approach to sustainable development. It is also important for the welfare and livelihood of the small and marginal coastal farmers. Countries can tap into other sources for energy which is very important for India and ASEAN and to address the sustainable agriculture goals of the blue economy, countries will have to form new policies.

Alounkeo Kittikhoum, Minister to the Prime Minister’s Office, Lao People's Democratic Republic said that the country hopes that India can help the ASEAN countries in improving agricultural productivity, enhancing farmers’ income and sharing of farm technology. “There is a need for a more collaborative approach towards enhanced maritime issues like search and rescue, maritime security, connectivity, illegal trafficking, among others."

Devendra Kumar Singh, Chairman, APEDA said that in the last few years food processing has been moving up in India. “There has been a gradual shift towards value-added healthy food and India and ASEAN can collaborate for processing and export of such value-added food products,” he said. He further said that India and ASEAN can collaborate for enhanced productivity, facilitating business to business interactions, and mutual recognition of trade barriers as well as setting up of standards across the region and certification etc.


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