Unido’s new initiative on bamboo for north eastFebruary 3rd, 2009 - 2:51 pm ICT by IANS
Guwahati, Feb 3 (IANS) The United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) has tied up a $2-million, four-year project which will promote the bamboo industry in the north east, including its use in handicraft, construction materials and exports.As part of the project, the UN agency has set up a $600,000 trust fund with the government-run North Eastern Council (NEC) with support from the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, a UNIDO statement said Tuesday.
The project also calls for analysing the prospects for rural livelihoods within the bamboo clusters, as also the pre-processing potential, marketing of produce, product design, packaging and quality control, the statement added.
The agencies are also developing a five-acre plot along the Guwahati-Shillong highway to demonstrate modern technologies for bamboo processing and train the artisans, as also support small and medium enterprises in the region.
According to Food and Agribusiness Strategic Advisory and Research, a think tank, India has 30 percent of the world’s bamboo resources, but contributes only four percent share of the global market.
This is mainly because of the low productivity, which is 0.4 tonnes per hectare, compared to several times higher in countries like Japan, China and Malaysia, which contribute about 80 percent to the world’s bamboo market, it said.
UNIDO will also leverage the resources of the Cane and Bamboo Technology Centre, which facilitated the pact, to offer other specialized services in areas like renewable energy and leather processing to create incomes in the region.