United Nations resident coordinator in India Lise Grande and Mizoram Chief Secretary L Tochhawng signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Thursday to execute the 'Joint United Nations Initiative Project (JUNIP)' in the state, an official of the Mizoram planning department said.

Mizoram Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla, his cabinet colleagues and senior officials were present at the MoU signing ceremony.

The official said the three-year-long JUNIP would focus on the food and livelihood security of the poor people and farmers, environment protection, ecological balance and sustainable use of bamboo, forest and agriculture produce.

"The project would eliminate the middlemen between the market and the producers. Farmers and producers would be taught about how to take their products to the markets and avoiding the middlemen," the official said.

Four specialised United Nations agencies - International Labour Organisation, Food and Agriculture Organisation, United Nations Development Programme and United Nations Industrial Development Organisation - would help the Mizoram government implement the project.

According to the official, the UN would give Rs 24.54 crore for the project while the Mizoram government would spend Rs 1.22 crore.

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