Australian and Indian scientists collaborate to improve agricultural production

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New Delhi, Feb 15 (ANI): Leading Australian and Indian agricultural researchers working together on joint research projects are gathering this week to highlight their achievements and to establish future research priorities.

In Karnal on 16 February leading wheat scientists are meeting to progress their collaboration on breeding highly resistant wheat varieties to overcome climatic and disease stress.

The workshop is part of an Indo-Australian wheat breeding program, initiated in 2008, co-funded by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and ACIAR.

On 18 February, Australian and Indian research program managers, policy makers and development professionals will gather for a strategic dialogue to set priorities for shared research activity for the next five years.

The Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), which has been funding agricultural research in India since 1983, has arranged a series of workshops and field visits.

Australian High Commissioner to India Peter Varghese said Australia and India have similar environmental conditions and natural resource management issues, along with common crops such as wheat, sorghum and pulses, which has led to common agricultural research interests.

"India is looking to improve food security and reduce rural poverty through increased crop production, and I am pleased that Australia, through ACIAR, is in a position to assist," Varghese said.

Since 1983 ACIAR has funded 80 bilateral and multilateral projects in India representing approximately 47 million Australian dollars, and substantial co-investment from Indian partners.

The current program consists of 12 on-going multi-year projects and activities valued at 22 million Australian dollars. (ANI)

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