New Zealanders must understand Indian farming potential

Venkat Raman at INZBC Summit

Monday, June 13, 2016, 1250 pm

New Zealand companies can contribute to the development of agriculture in India through their innovative skills, modern technology and farm management techniques, a senior government official has said.

Speaking at the one-day Summit on Agri-Tech organised by the India New Zealand Business Council at the Langham Hotel in Auckland, Jane Cunliffe, New Zealand Trade Commissioner based in Delhi, described India as a ‘major economy on the move.’

“Population and income growth are key drivers in the growth of the economy. However, the agricultural sector needs immediate attention to cope with the challenges of the modern world including skills development; farm mechanisation, cold storage, warehousing, food processing and packaging. We need to understand where New Zealand can fit,” she said.

Emerging economy

Ms Cunliffe said that the New Zealand Trade & Enterprise was seeing larger farms emerging in India and that it was working with 60 companies intensely for achieving the objectives.

“With 69% of India still living in rural areas and more than 500 million people listed as vegetarians, there is ample scope to enhance the participation of New Zealand companies in India. It is however important to consider a number of issues before engaging with India’s farming sector.

“We need to get a number of things right and ask the right questions. ‘Can New Zealand, as a successful primary sector producer, supply to India? Will our systems and technology fit?’ We need to get things right,” she said.

Ms Cunliffe was leading a panel on ‘Commercial and Partnerships,’ which included Sanjeev Asthana, Chairman. Agricultural Skills Council of India, Stuart Gordon, Chief Executive, Waikato Innovation Park, Alan Pollard, Chief Executive, Pip Fruit and Mark Steed, Head of Agri Business and Property Finance, Westpac.

More than 100 delegates are attending the event, which will be addressed by Prime Minister John Key this evening.

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Photo Caption: Jane Cunliffe at the INZBC Summit

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