The Minster also opined that in most cases in NER, the right guidelines regarding the establishment of food processing units are not available.
Minister of State for Food Processing Industries, Rameswar Teli recently attended the stakeholders meet on Food Processing, organized by Ministry of Food Processing Industries in partnership with the Government of Assam at Guwahati, Assam. He said that the economy and employment opportunities of the region have increased through the Mega Food Park in Nalbari District, Assam.
Teli in his speech highlighted that Ministry of Food Processing Industries has been allocating 10% of its budget for implementation of its schemes and programs in the North Eastern Region for the development of the Food Processing Sector, as per the policy of the Government of India and in line with the priorities of the sector.
Minister stated that as of today, 15 Food Processing units are in operation in Assam with a project cost of around 200 crores. He has also added that Agro Processing Clusters Projects worth about 60 crores has been sanctioned in Assam and the APC project for the same amount is in the pipeline to be sanctioned.
Teli further added that under Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana (PMKSY), a flagship scheme of MoFPI, special benefits are available to the North Eastern States in terms of higher rate of subsidy and other relaxations to attract investors. For instance, the rate of subsidy in the North Eastern Region ranges from 50% to 75%, compared to the 35% to 50% in general areas. At present, 28 Projects have been sanctioned in Assam under PMKSY, out of which 7 are Operational. MoS also highlighted that Krishi Udaan Yojana has been specifically designed keeping NER in mind.
The minister also opined that in most cases in NER, the right guidelines regarding the establishment of food processing units are not available. In order to solve this problem, a Project Development Cell has been formed in MoFPI, which provides help to the interested entrepreneur in counselling, and in making of DPR etc.
Teli urged the Government of Assam to make the PMKSY and PMFME accessible to the people. He hoped that through development of the Food Processing Sector, farmers could get the right price for their produce, reduce post-harvest waste and create new opportunities for investment and employment.