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India seeks Taiwanese investment in food processing sector

India seeks Taiwanese investment in food processing sector

New Delhi, Aug 19, India Thursday sought investment from Taiwan in the country’s food processing sector.

“Taiwan can become the catalysing agent that can help India feed the world,” Minister for Food Processing Industries Subodh Kant Sahai said here, addressing a visiting 25-member delegation of the Taiwan Association for Food Science and Technology.

“I invite Taiwan to help us enhance our capability in the food processing sector,” Sahai said.

The processed food industry is a major component of the Taiwanese economy. In 2009, this sector posted revenues of $17 billion. In fact, four of the top 10 food companies in China are Taiwanese.

Stating that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has called for a second Green Revolution in India, Sahai said that this would be possible only through industrialisation of agri-produce in the country.

“And Taiwan is a leader in this sector,” the minister said.

Pointing out that at $1 billion, Taiwanese investment in India was very low, Sahai said he wanted this figure to grow to “$100 billion in the years to come”.

The minister also called for transfer of food processing technologies from Taiwan to India and joint collaboration in research and development in the sector.

Philip Wen-Chyi Ong, a representative of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Centre in New Delhi, gave an overview of Taiwan’s achievements in the processed food sector and the opportunities that are available for Indo-Taiwanese cooperation in this area.

Speaking to IANS, Ong said: “All this while, Taiwanese investment in India has been limited to the manufacturing and technology sectors and most of this investment has been made in the state of Tamil Nadu.”

“We are now thinking of diversifying from China (where Taiwan has made heavy investments in the processed food sector) to India.”

Asked about the areas in the Indian food processing sector Taiwan would be interested in, Ong mentioned production of instant noodles and cooking oils and setting up of cold chain facilities.

“I hope to double Taiwan’s investment in India from $1 billion in three years’ time,” he said.

Karnataka’s Minister for Large and Medium Scale Industries, Murugesh Nirani, who was also present, promoted his state as an investment destination in the food processing sector.

Thursday’s meeting was also attended by representatives of India’s information technology, mining, electronics and telecommunications sectors.

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