Hub set up help by USA
US to help set up 30 agri hubs in Indian eastern states
NEW DELHI: To take the bilateral economic partnership forward, the US today said it will provide assistance to India in setting up 30 agri hubs in the Eastern states to galvanise their growth in the farm sector.
"We will provide technical assistance in setting up 30 agri hubs in the Eastern states of India to help the region achieve second green revolution," USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah said at a CII function here.
Shah, the highest-ranking Indian-American in the Obama Administration, said US is interested in promoting partnership especially in the farm sector through engagements with private enterprises, research centres and institutions like CII.
"Bihar whose almost 80 per cent population is dependent on agriculture continues to suffer from agricultural backwardness. We would like to assist it and other states in the Eastern areas to help them achieve agricultural growth", Shah, heading a US delegation here, said.
Earmarking it as a priority areas, the government has announced allocation of Rs 300 crore in the 2011-12 fiscal to help the Eastern states usher in second green revolution in the country.
Shah said efforts would be made to build new business models between institutions to enrich each others economy.
With a budget of over USD 40 billion and nearly 2,000 employees, USAID is an independent federal agency that is responsible for most US foreign aid.
Shah said US President Barack Obama has profound respect for India's innovation in agriculture and food and wished to take forward the partnership through significant economic engagements. During his tour of India in November 2010, Obama had clearly stated this, he added.
To carry forward the task, the CII announced setting up of the CII-Jubiliant Bhartia Food and Agriculture Centre of Excellence (CII-FACE). It will focus on imparting efficiencies across the supply chain right from the farm gate to the end consumer.
Current trade between India and US stands at USD 45 billion.
Major items exported by India to the US include IT services, textiles, machinery, gems and diamonds, chemicals, iron and steel products, coffee, tea, and other edible food products.
Major American items imported by India include aircraft, fertilisers, computer hardware, scrap metal and medical equipment.
Representatives of leading agri and food industries including Pepsico India and Dabur Ayurvet participated in the interactive session. Other participants included Syngenta India, Mckinsey & Company, Dupont India, Central Warehousing Corporation and Yes Bank.