KOCHI (India), July 2 (Bernama) — The Ministry of Plantation Industries and Commodities is looking to adapt the Indian Rubber Board’s (IRB) strategies in facing the global weakness in rubber prices.
Its minister, Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas said that he was interested in IRB’s price stabilisation scheme which provided a safeguard for smallholders.
“We are very impressed with all their programmes, their research work and how they support the smallholders.
“It is always the responsibility of the government to see that its small holders do not suffer due to the declining prices. To get an ideal system (in facing the price fall) is very difficult,” he told Bernama in conjunction with his trade mission to India.
Uggah said the mission, among others, was aimed at understanding the price stabilisation process which was implemented by IRB for the period 2010-2013.
He also said that IRB was currently implementing a new model, which is yet to be approved by the government.
“This is a very beneficial visit, we are aware that they are undertaking a number of research. They even told us that they might come up with a smart rubber clone.
“One of IRB’s task is to ensure that the right clone is planted in the right area. But, with this smart clone, it can adapt to any different environment.
“We have been good friends for a long time, we have been good trading partners, exchanging technologies.
“As for rubber, the challenge in the industry currently is that we need to come out with new downstream products. Any new product will face new challenges in terms of marketing and acceptance from the consumers,” said Uggah.
The minister also said besides rubber, there was a big potential for collaboration between India and Malaysia for other commodity businesses.