IMPHAL, June 20 - A two-day international buyers-sellers’ meet held here, concluded with field trips by delegates to pineapple fields of the State today.
The conference was organised by the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), in association with the North Eastern Regional Agriculture Marketing Corporation (NERMAC), after successfully holding the first such meet in Guwahati on March 5.
Business delegates, including 20 buyers from South East Asia, Gulf and neighbouring countries, besides APEDA and NERMAC officials, also visited the Loktak lake, the largest freshwater lake in the North East, and Keibul Lamjao, the only floating national park in the world – both located in Bishnupur district.
The international buyers-sellers’ meet, which is a part of the initiative to put North East India on the export map of the country, is expected to provide a platform for meetings among international buyers, exporters, farmers and growers to explore opportunities and export prospects in the North East region, particularly in Manipur.
The meet was opened on Wednesday by a team of officials led by Dr Anup Wadhawan, Secretary in the Union Ministry of Commerce, APEDA chairman Paban Kumar Borthakur, Principal Secretary of Horticulture and Soil Conservation Department, Manipur, JC Ramthanga, and NERMAC Managing Director Pankaj Prasad. Dignitaries and delegates from abroad and other parts of the country and the State attended the meet.
In his inaugural speech, Commerce Secretary Dr Anup Wadhawan said the North East region has huge potential in the agricultural and horticultural sector. The region’s strategic location in the vicinity of the South East Asian countries can offer big opportunities for trade and economic activities, he pointed out.
The Government of India is always ready to support the efforts of the State Government to promote exports, he said. “The first and foremost entry point is the export strategy through which we need to fill the gaps in infrastructure and logistics and regulatory requirements,” Dr Wadhawan stressed.