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    Bangladesh Cold Storage Association (BCSA) on Saturday urged the government to double the cash incentive from its current level of 10 percent to boost exports of the vegetable stored in 313 cold storages across the country.

    Chairman of the association M Jasim Uddin, in a statement, said at present over 26 lakh metric tons of potatoes are stored in cold storages and seven lakh tones are likely to remain unsold as the next harvest is only two months away.

    There is a fear that a huge amount of potatoes would go rotten and farmers and small traders would count a major loss, adversely impacting potato cultivation in next season, he said.

    He said the 10 percent increase in export incentives would encourage the traders to export bulk amount of potatoes to Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Dubai and Middle East countries and earn sizable amount of foreign currencies.

    The chief of BCSA suggested the government to reopen the potato flex [processing] industries and increase cash incentive for those to woo potato flex exports [export of potato products].

    "Potato flexes [processed products] could sustain for minimum two to three years, whereas raw potatoes would perish in short terms if they remain unsold,"he said adding the country would also be able to fetch huge foreign currency through export of flexes.
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