J&K to collaborate with New Zealand to revamp Animal Husbandry sector: Navin

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, Dec 2: Principal Secretary, Animal and Sheep Husbandry Department, Navin Kumar Choudhary, held a meeting regarding Memorandum of Cooperation between Jammu and Kashmir Animal and Sheep Husbandry Department and High Commissioner/ Ambassador for New Zealand on capacity building and transfer of know-how for enhancing sheep wool and meat industry in the Union Territory.
The meeting was attended by Directors Sheep Husbandry Jammu and Kashmir, Dr Sanjeev Kumar and Dr Abdul Salam, Director Finance, Animal and Sheep Husbandry Department, Imtiyaz Wani, Director Planning, Animal and Sheep Husbandry Department, Girdhari Lal, besides participants from New Zealand including Acting HOM, Brent Rapson, Director, New Zealand G2G, Mischa Mannix-Opie, New Zealand Trade Commissioner for South Asia, Ralph Hays, Commercial Manager, G2G, Matthew Hall, Business Advisor, G2G, Peter Bull, Senior Business Development Manager, New Zealand High Commission Sudha Palit.
During the meeting, a brief power point presentation was given by J&K team depicting existing scenario of sheep and goat sector in the Union Territory pinning focus on strengths, weaknesses, opportunities besides threats of the sector. Besides, the participants were informed about the existing resource base of the UT besides were apprised about the envisaged vision of the Government of J&K.
Choudhary informed that one third of the demand of mutton is imported from neighbouring states to meet consumer requirement. He added that the small ruminant sector in the UT has not evolved at the desired pace over the years which has been precipitated by various factors like dearth of fodder supplies, insufficient breeding cover, inadequate vaccine availability and lack of modernization besides technological interventions which have been adopted in other parts of the world especially New Zealand. He emphasized that though J&K is a green state, it still has to rely on fodder supplies from comparatively drier states.
He said that J&K Government has already initiated steps for revamping the sector and shall not hesitate in taking further steps in collaboration with New Zealand G2G for revamping the sector further by infusing modern technological interventions into the sector. He reiterated that J&K has a liberal policy environment and all hurdles in way of strengthening of sheep sector shall be removed.
Brent Rapson, Acting HOM, welcomed the initiative and considered the MoC as a tool to strengthen bilateral relations between the Jammu and Kashmir Animal and Sheep Husbandry Department and New Zealand Government to enhance cooperation in the fields of capacity building, technology transfer, education, and training between the two countries. He was keen to cooperate and collaborate with J&K and offered full support from the New Zealand G2G.
Choudhary assured that after getting a legal opinion about the MoC, he shall push the MoC forward.