Matia for diversification of agro products to boost export

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DHAKA, May 03, 2018 (BSS)-Stressing the need for diversification of agricultural products agriculture minister Begum Matia Chowdhury today said diversification of agro products is a must for boosting the export of agricultural products.

“We’ve no other option but to diversify our agro products for boosting the export of our agricultural products,” said Matia Chowdhury while speaking at the inaugural ceremony of ‘DCCI Agro Tech 2018 Expo’ at International Convention City Bashundhara.

Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI), supported by USAID’s Agriculture Value Chain (AVC) Project, organized a two-day expo to bring different agro entrepreneurs, agro-processors, modern agro machinery importers, exporters, financial institutions, researchers under one roof.

The agriculture minister urged the private sector to bring diversity in agro-processing industry.

Matia Chowdhury said Bangladesh has already been able to discover saline-tolerant jute. Jute will not only be used for producing traditional sacks and pulp, Bangladesh needs to do extensive research through BCSIR and Jute Research Institute so that jute can be used for textile sector as well, she added.

Mentioning the surplus production of potato, she said, this year production of potato stood at 1.2 crore metric tons against the demand for 60 lakh metric tons. But the potato growers will not have to face any loss as the government is trying to export the surplus potato, she added.

She also said that one day Bangladesh will be able to comply with ‘Good Agriculture Practice (GAP)’ as the country’s entrepreneurs have every potential in this regard.

Secretary of the science and technology ministry Md. Anwar Hossain attended the inaugural ceremony as special guest while DCCI President Abul Kasem Khan delivered welcome address.

DCCI Vice President Riyadh Hossain, directors Akber Hakim, Andaleeb Hasan, Hossain A Sikder, Humayun Rashid, Imran Ahmed, Rashedul Ahsan, Mamun Akbar, Mohammad Bashir Uddin, SM Zillur Rahman, Waqar Ahmad Chowdhury, former Presidents Asif Ibrahim and Md. Sabur Khan were present at the ceremony.

DCCI President Abul Kasem Khan said the role of agriculture is undeniable in poverty alleviation, employment generation and source of raw materials for industry. For the development of agriculture Bangladesh needs to use modern technology, quality seeds and fertilizer and diversification, he added.

Khan urged the government to give subsidy to the agro sector. To attain the export target of $1.0 billion by the year 2021 form agro sector, Bangladesh have to develop skills of farmers, agro entrepreneurs, producers, importers, exporters and researchers, he added.

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