Northeast to Emerge as Hub for Rubber Production: Piyush Goyal

NEW DELHI: Union Minister Piyush Goyal said the Government plans to grow rubber on 2 lakh hectares of land in the Northeast over the next five years.

The Northeast, according to the Union Minister of Commerce, Industries, Textiles, Consumer Affairs, and Food and Public Distribution, might become a rubber-producing centre.

“Tripura is the second-largest producer of rubber in the country with 30,000 hectares of plantation,” Goyal stated through video conferencing at the ‘Destination Tripura – Investment Summit’ on Thursday.

The Union Minister of Commerce and Industry advised the state government to be the first off the block and take full advantage of becoming the first reaper to cultivate rubber plantations in the state, as per a statement issued by the Union Ministry of Commerce and Industry.

Four major tyre businesses, represented by the Automotive Tyre Manufacturers Association (ATMA), have pledged to invest Rs.1,000 crores over the next five years in the development of rubber plantations on 200,000 hectares of land in seven Northeast Indian states, according to the ATMA.

Rubber Board and ATMA signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on March 1, 2021. On May 20, 2021, the collaborating tyre businesses transferred Rs 12 crore to the Rubber Board’s account.

The tyre businesses’ funds are being utilised to purchase planting supplies in preparation for the start of planting in 2021. Goyal pointed out that bamboo farming is another important resource in the Northeast, and that Tripura has the largest bamboo flooring unit.

“Tripura has the potential to become the country’s Agarbatti centre, transforming India into Aatmanirbhar in the Bamboo, or Green Gold, industry,” Goyal added.

Making reference to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rallying cry of “Converting North-East into (Ashth Lakhsmi) of India,” Union Minister Goyal stated that the PM has given precedence to the “Focus Northeast” curriculum and that the “Make in India” programme has been put in place here as the “Make in North-East” programme.

“Invest India has established a specialized Northeast Desk, upgraded infrastructure, and supported industry,” Goyal added.

Goyal praised Tripura’s progress under the capable leadership of Biplab Kumar Deb, the state’s chief minister.

“The state government has been working diligently in administering, giving priority to the three ‘N’s, namely Niyat, Niti, and Niyam,” Goyal said, adding, “Tripura is the fourth literate state in the Northeast, has a thriving handlooms industry, 1.36 lakh weavers in Tripura, and Tripura jackfruit has been exported to London.”

According to Goyal, the Centre’s specific programmes encourage the use of agro-textiles and geotechnical textiles in the Northeastern area.

Shri Goyal praised the Tripura government’s capital promotion activities, including the SWAAGAT single-window portal, capital subsidy (30%), power subsidy (50%), complete reimbursement of State GST, and 4% interest subsidy, calling it “one of the best investment packages in the nation.” Goyal stated that the Investment Summit will assist Tripura in realising its full potential and that he hopes that investors would become participants in the state’s development path.

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