From Our Special Correspondent
Daijiworld Media Network - Bangalore
Bangalore, Feb 18: Export of Coir Geotextiles is poised to fetch Rs 500 crore over the next five years, according to Prof G Balachandran, Chairman of Coir Board.
Inaugurating a seminar on Coir Geotextiles and its Applications held in connection with the Karnataka Coir Expo being held in Bangalore, he said the world requirement of geotextiles is estimated to be 500 million sq. mts. per annum, of which natural fibre geotextiles was less than 5 per cent.
Prof Balachandran said reaching an export target of Rs 500 crore over the next five years from coir geotextiles will be quite a big jump considering the present exports was barely worth Rs 25 crore.
Adequate public awareness needs to be created among all sections of the end-users on the utility and its unique selling propositions like bio-degradability and environment-friendliness.
Congress MLA N L Narendra Babu, who presided over the inaugural session of the seminar, urged the Coir Board and the State Government to popularize the coir products so that more employment could be generated.
Rural women workers were producing innovative products like coir ornaments, handicraft items. Coir geotextiles can be used for constructed of rural roads, he said.
The seminar was attended by over 200 representatives from different parts of the State.
Addressing the three-day Management Development Programme (MDP), Prof Balachandran said Karnataka had a huge potential for production of value-added coir products like coir geotextiles, coir wood and coir pith products and also for entering the export market in a big way.
Of the 1000 exporters registered with the Coir Board, nearly half were from Tamil Nadu and 40 per cent from Kerala and the rest from other states, he said urging Karnataka to make concerted efforts to boost exports of coir geotextiles.
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