Jammu: To improve sheep farming sector, Jammu and Kashmir government on Thursday February 10 signed memorandum of cooperation (MoC) with New Zealand.
According to official statement, the virtual MoC signing ceremony was presided over by Lt Governor, Manoj Sinha at Raj Bhawan.
Sinha, on the occasion, said that the overarching objective of the MoC is to improve farmers’ remuneration, transfer of technology, marketing & value addition of sheep products of J&K.
The MoC was signed by Navin Kumar Choudhary, Principal Secretary to J&K Government, Animal & Sheep Husbandry Department and Mischa Mannix-Opie, Executive Director, New Zealand G2G as a mutual commitment between J&K and New Zealand for complementing each other’s capability in sheep sector.
The Lt Governor observed that the new partnership between J&K and New Zealand will boost production and productivity in the livestock sector of the UT.
“New Zealand is an important partner of India’s expanding relationship globally and we attach special values to our ties not only because of deep bonding and cultural affinities, but also from a mature understanding of our strategic convergences, global interests and economic potential,” Lt Governor asserted.
“Prime Minister Narendra Modi and New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern believe in shared commitment to promote ideals of democracy, peace and prosperity for the people. Despite turbulent events of global pandemic since the last two years, there has been almost seamless continuity in India-New Zealand relationship,” he said.
“This year marks 70th anniversary of commencement of bilateral relations between our two countries. It gives us opportunity to strengthen our partnership and our resolve to construct a strong edifice of a long term, mutual reinforcing economic relationship,” the Lt Governor added.
“Now, expanding our relationship further, New Zealand G2G, the well known public sector entity actively partnering with other Indian states to leverage expertise and solutions for sustainable development has entered into a cooperation agreement with J&K to encourage collaboration in the field of sheep husbandry, capacity building, technology transfer and training.”
The new partnership is aimed at doubling produce in the next three years with substantial increment in quality of livestock products, wool production and introducing processing facilities and value addition to boost income and benefits to Jammu & Kashmir, Sinha said.
“We are creating an enabling environment for the integrated growth of livestock sector which is providing livelihood support to around 1.2 million families and contributing 5% to the Union Territory’s GDP.”
The Lt Governor reaffirmed that the leadership of the two countries believes in the huge potential for our economic and commercial cooperation.
David Pine, New Zealand’s High Commissioner expressed hope that the cooperation of agreement shall further strengthen the relationship between J&K and New Zealand and help in achieving the desired results on ground.
Atul Chaturvedi, Secretary, Animal Husbandry, GoI, congratulated the J&K Government for the unique initiative to make new strides in making J&K self-reliant in livestock sector, besides enhancing the income of the farmers and improve the economy of J&K.
Similarly, Arun Kumar Mehta, Chief Sectary, J&K said that the MoC is a timely step to add further momentum to “our excellent bilateral ties and to facilitate greater institutional linkages between J&K and New Zealand”. This will improve our practices in the sheep farming sector and increase the income of everyone associated with it, Mehta added.
Mischa Mannix-Opie, Executive Director, New Zealand G2G said that the latest scientific interventions shall be extended to J&K which shall entail marketing of livestock products like wool for adding value to farmers’ produce.