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Call for sustainable development of bio-resources
Correspondent
 IMPHAL, Feb 24 – A national meet on bio-resources development has recommended planned promotion of black rice, bamboo, shiroy lily, sangai and other such unique bio-resources for all-round sustainable development of Manipur.

The sticky black rice, locally known as chak-hao, which costs Rs 80-100 a kg in the local market, is sold at Rs 300-400 a kilogram outside the State as it has a wonderful taste.

The recommendation was made at the end of the first ever National Bio-resources and Sustainable Development Summit held from February 19 to 20 at the Institute of Bio-resources Sustainable Development (IBSD) in Imphal with active participation of 250 subject experts and bio-resource managers from across India. Besides adopting an ‘Imphal Declaration on Bio-resources and Sustainable Development’, the meet also recommended interdependency of technology development and enterprise development.

“They need field models, system design, raw material flows over full annual production cycle, product range and pricing for existing and potential market conditions, marketing and sales strategies, end-to-end linkages, regulatory issues, etc., to ensure viable and sustainable business and maximize benefit for local communities. Technologies need to be adopted or modified, grass-root innovators and innovations need to be supported and modern science and technology have to be linked with traditional craft and other artisan goods,” recommended the Imphal Declaration.

“Local employment generation, including knowledge and skill development for employability should be the cornerstone of all interventions for sustainable development. They should enhance per capita rural GDP, infrastructure, health, education and livelihood for the people of NE.”

The summit also recommended the role of scientists and social scientists from knowledge, industry and civil society sectors in developing evidence-based or science-based policies and implementation of strategies for sustainable development in an integrated manner with a bottom-up approach, said senior administrative office of IBSD Akbar Majid in a press release.

A key recommendation is the development of local capacities for value addition of natural or bio-resources to maximise their returns to the local producer communities. The government may put in place incentives for local value addition, as well as disincentives against long distance flight of raw materials, it said.

Bio-resource federations, cooperatives and self-help groups are needed for capacity building, technology transfer and adoption, value addition and economies of scale while maximising employment and returns to the local producers, the Manipur Declaration added.

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