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Following China, India To Set-up Regional Presence of Intl. Potato Center

Updated: Apr 22, 2024 02:20:09pm

Following China, India To Set-up Regional Presence of Intl. Potato Center

New Delhi, Apr 22 (KNN) Seven years after China established a regional centre of the International Potato Centre (CIP), India is set to get its own CIP regional hub for South Asia.

The CIP-South Asia Regional Centre (CIP-SARC) is planned to be located in Agra, reported IE.

The new centre will serve potato and sweet potato farmers across India's major producing states like Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and West Bengal. It will also benefit other South Asian nations.

Sources indicate the proposal to establish the CIP-SARC is on the 100-day priority agenda of the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare for the new Indian government taking office in early June.

After negotiations between Indian and Peruvian officials, a formal agreement will be signed following approval by the Union Cabinet in India. The Agriculture Ministry has forwarded the proposal to the Committee on Establishment Expenditure headed by the Expenditure Secretary.

The USD 20 million project cost will be jointly funded, with India contributing USD 13 million and CIP providing the remaining amount. The Uttar Pradesh government will provide 10 hectares of land for the centre.

Key aims of the CIP-SARC include developing new climate-resilient, disease-free potato and sweet potato varieties suitable for processing. It will leverage CIP's global science expertise, innovation networks and genetic resources.

India is the world's second largest producer of potatoes after China. Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and Bihar were the top three potato-producing states in 2020-21.

The proposed centre will be India's second major international agricultural research institute after the IRRI-South Asia Regional Centre established in Varanasi in 2017.

(KNN Bureau)


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