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Rice to silk, Bihar lists 30 indigenous products for Centre’s export push

The Bihar government prepared an exhaustive district-wise list, with 26 of 38 districts identifying products specific to them.

Written by Santosh Singh | Patna | November 30, 2020 1:05:09 am
Bihar export products, Bihar litchi, Bihar fox nuts, Bihar makhana, bhagalpuri silk, Bihar news, indian expressCurrently, only Muzaffarpur's district's Shahi litchi and Darbhanga's makhana (foxnut) are being exported from the state on a small scale. (Express photo)

From rice varieties to silk textiles, the Bihar government has come out with a list of around 30 indigenous products that could be considered for an exports push by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), which is scheduled to review a state-wide list of such items in a December meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi under the Atmanirbhar Bharat programme.

DGFT, under the Union Ministry of Commerce and Industry, had asked all states and Union Territories to prepare a list of local products that could be promoted for exports.

The Bihar government prepared an exhaustive district-wise list, with 26 of 38 districts identifying products specific to them.

Currently, only Muzaffarpur’s district’s Shahi litchi and Darbhanga’s makhana (foxnut) are being exported from the state on a small scale.

Now, Bhagalpur district’s silk and Jardalu mangoes have been included on the list, an expected move considering their popularity.

While Patna has listed its pharmaceutical products, Araria and Purnia have identified jute products. Aurangabad and Bhojpur, meanwhile, have chosen rice varieties. Govindbhog, a flavoured rice variety from Kaimur in Rohtas region—known as the state’s “rice-bowl”—has been included.

The other districts that have submitted products are Gopalganj (jaggery), Katihar and Khagaria (jute and makhana), Darbhanga and Madhubani (Mithila paintings), Munger (tobacco), Vaishali (biscuits), and West Champaran (wooden furniture).

A senior official at the Department of Industries in Bihar said: “We are working only as a facilitator for DGFT in identifying local products, which can have national and international markets. Several lead banks also have a role to play in promoting districts as export hubs. State-level export promotion committee and district export plan will come into play once the export rating and index are ready.”

Bihar government’s district export plan will be effective from January 2021.

At least six Bihar districts grow makhana and as many districts have well-known varieties of rice. Litchi and mango are seasonal products of at least 10 Bihar districts.

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