Chandigarh June 15: The Punjab Government today announced a series of measures to develop the state as a national hub for vegetable export. A decision to this effect was taken at a meeting Chief Minister Punjab Mr. Parkash Singh Badal had with a delegation of individual exporters vegetable perishables.
Chief Minister’s Media Advisor Mr. Harcharn Bains said that the government would treat vegetable exports as a priority sector. Mr. Badal would also meet the Union Agriculture Minister Mr. Shard Pawar to seek preferential status to Punjab for vegetable exports. The Chief Minister would also press for expanding the present scale of trade through the Attari-Wagha Border to turn it into a full scale commercial zone, said Mr. Bains.
The state government also announced a package of incentives to boost vegetables exports from the state, especially to the Middle East, Europe and South East.
The Punjab Government would extend the facility of uninterrupted power supply and direct supply lines from the urban feeders to pre-cooling chambers and refrigeration units on the farms of the exporters. The entire expenditure for shifting of the electricity line from rural to urban feeders to would be borne by the Punjab Agri Export Corporation (PAGREXCO). Similarly, power for the cooling chambers and refrigerated vans would be supplied as per agriculture rates instead of commercial as at present. Mr. Badal would soon take up the issue of the certification of Animal quarantine Center to be set up at Attari-Wagha Border in Amritsar district with the Ministry of Agriculture.
The Chief Minister appreciated the initiatives taken by these exporters to promote the concept of diversification of agriculture in true spirit and asked the other farmers of the state to replicate the experiment. He also promised to allot them a chunk of Panchayat Lands on lease basis for the cultivation of fruit and vegetables on large scale. Mr. Badal also asked the PAGREXO to provide reefer vans for the export of these fruits and vegetables on the nominal charges, said Mr. Bains.
The meeting was attended by Chief Minister’s Media Advisor Mr. Harcharn Bains, Chief Secretary Punjab Mr. R.I Singh, Financial Commissioner Development Mr. R.S. Sandhu, Deputy Commissioner Amritsar K.S. Pannu, M.D. Punjab Agro Mr. S.K. Sandhu and Additional Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister Mr. Gagandeep Singh Brar. The delegation of exporters consisted of ;K.B.S Sidhu (Patiala horticulture Pvt. Ltd, H.P.S. Bajwa, Upinder Singh Randhawa (Amrtisar district) and Sukhpal Singh Bhullar( Bhullar Orchid, Bathinda).