Pawar calls for timebound implementation of Indo-Israel work plan

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New Delhi, Jan 22 (UNI) India and Israel today held discussions to strengthen cooperation in areas ranging from research to investment in infrastructure, and cooperation at state and industry levels.

The discussion was held between Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar and his Israeli counterpart Shalom Simhon.

Welcoming the visiting delegation, Mr Pawar called for time-bound implementation of the Work Plan agreed by the two countries in 2006.

Extending India's offer for cooperation in mutually beneficial areas, Mr Pawar said, '' Indian agriculture is changing and offers tremendous opportunities for private sector to play a constructive role in all stages of agricultural chain-infrastructure, R&D extension, diversification to high agriculture, value addition and agro processing and marketing, which however, requires significant investment in capital and technology.'' He added that the technology needs to be customised in the interest of the end users. A majority of Indian farmers are small holders with limited resources, who are very keen to adopt new technology.

With this, he urged his Israeli counterpart to keep the prices of end products and services affordable and within the reach of the small holder farmers.'' Earlier, the Israel delegation visited Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Haryana. The delegation visited mandis in Haryana, and the National Dairy Research Institute, Karnal, and held discussions with Rajasthan government on a project being implemented in olive cultivation.

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