New Delhi [India], November 10 (ANI): Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar on Thursday urged BIMSTEC member countries to cooperate in developing a comprehensive regional strategy to strengthen cooperation for the transformation of agriculture.
While addressing the Second Agriculture Ministerial-level meeting of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) through video conference, Tomar referred to the importance of millet as a nutritious food and the efforts made by India to promote millet and its products during the International Year of Millets - 2023 while urging the member countries to adopt a conducive agricultural food system and a healthy diet for all.
The minister asked participating countries to actively take part in India's initiative to promote millet as a food. Tomar said that natural and ecological farming should be promoted to conserve agricultural biodiversity and reduce the use of chemicals.
The Second BIMSTEC Agriculture Ministerial Meeting had adopted the action plan for strengthening BIMSTEC Agricultural Cooperation (2023-2027). An MoU between the BIMSTEC Secretariat and the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) has been signed and approval has been given to bring Fisheries and Livestock sub-sectors under the Agricultural Working Group. BIMSTEC member countries appreciated India's efforts to strengthen cooperation in agricultural research and development and for awarding six scholarships each for postgraduate and PhD programmes in agriculture.
Tomar said that along with digital farming and precision farming, initiatives under the 'One Health' approach are also taking shape in India.
He emphasised the importance of cooperation in agriculture and allied sectors to ensure food security, nutrition, environmental sustainability and livelihood support, for which it is required to increase technical and economic cooperation to deal with the challenges of climate change, agro-biodiversity, microbial preventive resistance under the 'One Health' approach and other programmes. (ANI)