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  • Govt plans talks with African envoys

    May 25th, 2017

    The government will convene talks with ambassadors of 12 raw cashew exporting African countries in Thiruvananthapuram to explore ways for direct purchase of cashew by the proposed Cashew Board. The aim is to avoid exploitation by traders involved in import of raw nut, Minister for Cashew Industry J. Mercykutty Amma told the media here on Thursday.The groundwork for the meeting was laid by the Union Ministry of External Affairs on a request from the State government, Ms. Mercykutty said. The ambassadors expressed their willingness to attend the meeting. The Minister said Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan would preside over the meeting and a date would be announced soon. She said the meeting may be held during the first week of June.

    She said exploitation by traders was one of the main reasons for processors incurring loss in the cashew business. Help for private sectorMs. Mercykutty said such moves were intended to protect small-scale processors in the private sector. It means that apart from supplying imported raw cashew to the public sector factories, the proposed board also intends supplying raw cashew to the small- scale processors in the private sector. She said it was the government’s decision to keep the private sector healthy in view of the workers employed in the sector. The Minister said the government did not expect all cashew exporting African countries to support the proposal as traders were influential in some of these nations. At the same time, it was also expected that some countries could agree to such a tie-up. Such a move could brighten the prospects of the State’s cashew industry, she said.