India, Afghanistan to partner in food safety

India’s union cabinet has approved a cooperation arrangement between Food Safety and Standards Authority of India, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and Afghanistan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation & Livestock, for cooperation in the field of Food Safety and related areas

April 4, 2018

This will facilitate information sharing, training and capacity building measures to improve food safety ecosystem

Deal to provide of technical exchange in import procedures, quality control, sampling, testing, packaging and labeling

India has assistance of US$1 billion for capability building in education, health, agriculture, energy and infrastructure

India Government has take up 116 High Impact Community Development Projects in 31 provinces of Afghanistan

India’s Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved an agreement with Afghanistan in the field of food safety and related areas. The deal was signed between the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) and Afghanistan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock (MAIL). This will facilitate information sharing, training and capacity building measures to improve food safety ecosystem. The deal will include the establishment of an information exchange mechanism; facilitation of technical exchange in import procedures, quality control, sampling, testing, packaging and labeling; organisation of joint seminars, workshops, visits and training programme; as well as cooperation in related fields.

The latest cooperation between the countries is backed by a Strategic Partnership Agreement signed by the two Governments in 2011. Under this, India has assisted Afghanistan to build necessary infrastructure and institutions, while providing support to local businesses. India has announced additional assistance of US$1 billion for capability building in spheres such as education, health, agriculture, skill development, women’s empowerment, energy and infrastructure. Some of the projects that India has recently entered in Afghanistan include the Shahtoot Dam, a drinking water and irrigation project in Kabul, a road project to connect Band-e-Amir in Bamyan Province, low cost housing for returning Afghan refugees in Nangarhar Province and a gypsum board manufacturing plant in Kabul.

Additionally, India has take up 116 High Impact Community Development Projects in 31 provinces of Afghanistan. These investments will be in the areas of education, health, agriculture, irrigation, drinking water, renewable energy, flood control, micro-hydro power, sports and administrative infrastructure. India has also announced that on-going programmes for education, capacity building, skills and human resource development of Afghanistan, one of the largest such programmes in the world, will continue for a further period of five years till 2022. These partnerships have created room to expand bilateral trade between the countries which stood at around US$800 million during the financial year 2016-17. To aid this growth, India is building a railway line to connect Afghanistan with a sea port in Iran.