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State tops in bamboo growth
Staff Reporter DIMAPUR, JAN 20 (NPN):
Published on 21 Jan. 2010 12:45 AM IST
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Nagaland has a bamboo plantation area of more than 18,000 hectares, the largest in the country. The remarkable feat has been made possible with the drafting of the Nagaland Bamboo policy in 2004 with stress on developing bamboo as a resource and enterprise and the subsequent establishment of the Nagaland Bamboo Development Agency (NBDA) in 2005. The NBDA has set a target of 50,000 hectares of bamboo plantation by the end of the 12th five year plan. Disclosing this at the distribution ceremony of machinery tools to five handicrafts production units at Nagaland Bamboo Resource Centre, Dimapur on Wednesday, additional chief secretary & Nagaland Bamboo Mission, director, Alemtemshi Jamir said the initial target of the agency was to tap the market projected to be at least Rs 500 crs, by the year 2015. But he lamented that the mission has dissipated a little for the past two and half years. Alemtemshi informed that there was a huge plantation drive going on in the entire state even in the remote districts to meet the demand of the market. He said even the Tuli Paper Mill use about four lakh tones of bamboo in a year. He also said the state has become a model for development of bamboo resources in other states. He, however, expressed disappointment over the lack of enthusiasm among some bamboo entrepreneurs although there was huge demand for bamboo charcoal and other products. Alemtemshi queried whether it was the law order situation or excessive taxation by various groups that was bogging down the upcoming entrepreneurs not only in bamboo sector alone. He pointed out that the investment in the state was not that encouraging as many of the investors were apprehensive that the system might fail. He called upon the beneficiaries to take the lead and lay the base for bamboo enterprise by being competitive both in price and quality wise. “Don’t let it be the end of things but the beginning” he encouraged. The additional chief secretary also said there was a corpus fund of Rs 2 crores for the entrepreneurs and called for judicious use of the fund by coming up with ‘practical’ ideas and proposals. Alem Longkumer of Country Craft who spoke on behalf of the beneficiaries expressed gratitude to the NBDA for supplying them with the tools and machineries. Stating that they were fortunate enough to receive the tools which otherwise was a huge financial burden to purchase, promised to bring out qualitative products. Some achievement of the bamboo enterprises include the mats produced by Anaki bamboo cluster consisting of five villages under Mokokchung district which is being supplied to Arunachal Ply Industries Ltd. A marketing tie up has been established with a Bangalore firm to supply bamboo square and round sticks for incense sticks. The state also supplies bamboo charcoal to SM Smelters of Arunachal Pradesh in addition to sales in the local market along with tons of bamboo shoots which are provided to Nagaland Foods Pvt Ltd and NFVP, Dimapur.

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