Jhapa, January 21
Even as most of the country’s leading business houses focus on ‘trading’ business, Golyan Group, a leading commercial entity, has diversified its investment in the agriculture sector.
The group has acquired 209bighas of land in four different places in Jhapa to start commercial farming and completed a preliminary study for the purpose.
The group has investments in various areas like Reliance Spinning Mills, Tricot Industries, Shivam Plastics and also in solar energy, hydropower, financial sector and hospitality industry.
Pawan Golyan, chairman of Golyan Group, informed that the group invested Rs 600 million to acquire the agriculture land in Jhapa. “This is a pilot project and we plan to invest in 1,000bighas in near future.” He further stated that the group plans to develop Provinces 1 and 2 as agri processing zones and supply a majority of the country’s demand of vegetables and fruits.
“As the country has been facing a huge problem of trade deficit, the corporate sector needs to diversify and focus on export and agriculture sector,” he asserted. “The government has set a clear vision for the country’s development and prosperity and we are taking a leading role in agriculture sector.”
Talking about his agri plans, Golyan said that in the first phase the group plans to eliminate the pesticides in the land it has purchased and produce organic fruits and vegetables.
As per the company, it will establish its own brand and supply chain for the agricultural goods that it produces. In fact, the group has already established a brand name called ‘Mato’ for marketing purposes. The goods collected from the group’s farms and also from other farmers will be sold under Mato brand, company said.
According to Golyan, the company will also support local farmers to convert from traditional farming methods to a modern system which will help them increase their income. “We will focus on crops like lemon, red lily papaya, turmeric, watermelon, papaya, ginger and seasonal strawberry, among others.”
Golyan Group has already hired 15 agriculture scientists from North Bengal Agriculture University, India for soil, environment and organic testing and to provide other necessary support. The scientists have started their work and the group has separated 25bighas of land in Jhapa to establish a research and development centre for agriculture.
“We have already started a movement called ‘go organic’ among farmers in Jhapa, which will be expanded to other parts of country under supervision of our scientists and technical personnel,” Golyan said, adding they are negotiating with the government for needed support.
He stressed that the government needs to listen to and address the genuine concerns raised by stakeholders as the country’s agricultural import bill has been perennially rising. “Nepal imported fruits and vegetables worth Rs four billion in the last fiscal and we need to minimise that figure as quickly as possible.”
“We will also establish agriculture processing zones in various parts of the country and processing units as per need,” informed Golyan. “We also have plans to construct cold storage facilities across the country.”
He further stated that the group will also try to make sure that farmers get the price that they are supposed to for their produce. “At present, due to middlemen a lot of farmers are not
receiving the price they are supposed to and we plan to end this practice too.”
A version of this article appears in print on January 22, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.