Assam tea industry to suffer if Russia-Ukraine war continues: ITA

SILCHAR: The chairperson of the Indian Tea Association (ITA), Nayantara Paul Choudhury has claimed that the Indian tea industry will suffer due to the war between Russia and Ukraine and added that Assam will suffer more if the war continues.

According to her, Russia and Ukraine combinedly consume 45 million kg tea from Assam every year. Russia buys 42 million kg while 3 million kg goes to Ukraine every year. ITA is afraid that India may lose such a huge market due to the war.

“The war anyway is going to impact our tea industry and Assam will be the biggest sufferer because Russia and surrounding countries are its prime buyers. At this moment we are exporting the tea produced last year. If the war continues further, we’ll lose the market for freshly produced tea,” Paul Choudhury said.

“If exports reduce, there will be a huge burden of produced tea because tea leaf grows and if we do not collect the leaves, entire system will be destroyed. With the huge burden of produced tea, the rate will fall and it may lead to further closure of several gardens,” she added.

Nayantara Paul Choudhury along with general secretary of ITA Arijit Raha attended the annual general meeting (AGM) of Surma Valley Branch of ITA in Silchar on Saturday evening.

A white paper on tea industry of Assam’s Barak Valley was published during the AGM which, according to ITA, is a first of its kind initiative. The white paper highlights issues which can give a boost to production and distribution of tea in the Barak Valley region of Assam.

Arijit Raha siad that they are going to present this white paper to the government of Assam and the union ministry of finance soon. They are planning to place some demands to the state and central governments which can help the tea industry to grow.