FICCI focuses on bolstering India’s presence in global agri-based exports
FICCI with APEDA and Yes Bank organized the virtual conference on ‘Enhancing Export Competitiveness of Agriculture Produce’ focusing on Rice and Fruits & Vegetables
In the first of its series of ‘Enhancing Export Competitiveness of Agriculture Produce’ virtual conferences by FICCI, the focus of the day-long event was on discussing a holistic action plan by the who’s who of the agricultural sector to significantly promote and increase India’s global export competitiveness for the two value chains – i.e. Fruits & Vegetables and Rice. Organised in association with Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) and Yes Bank, the event saw the stalwarts having a unanimous view that India needs to upscale its storage and export infrastructure, supply chain solutions and brand the indigenously produced fruits, vegetables and rice importantly to remain competitive in the vast global agricultural export market.
The event’s inauguration session marked the presence of Dr. M. Angamuthu, IAS, Chairman, APEDA, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India; T R Kesavan, Chairman, FICCI National Agriculture Committee & Group President, TAFE; Sanjay Sacheti, Co-Chairman, FICCI National Agriculture Committee & Country Head & Executive Director, Olam Agro India Pvt Ltd; Nitin Puri, Group President & Global Head, Food & Agribusiness Strategic Advisory & Research, Yes Bank, and Jyoti Vij, Deputy Secretary General, FICCI.
While India is heading for a sizeable agricultural surplus, Sacheti expressed, “Production is rising for fruits and vegetables in India, but a minuscule share is seen in exports. Given the agro-climatic conditions of India, it is a potential powerhouse to contribute to the $300 bn worth of global trade. However, we do only $2-3 bn, 1 per cent of global fruits and vegetables export scenario.”
Dr. Angamuthu said, “India is known as a raw product exporter. We need to improve our product diversification. We are having a good bank of organic produce, but never get good value for it. We must improve our organic identity. India is a repository of 300 Agri products with GI tags. AT APEDA, 94 products are GI tagged. This is the right time to export these products. Value addition and product diversification for horticulture and agricultural needs to be taken.”
Puri of Yes bank expressed that from the supply side, private investment is lacking in the country due to non-promising policies. The other countries have thrived with private players investing in the agricultural export sector from infrastructure to supply chain solutions, etc.
The latter half of the event saw panel discussions wherein notable players dealing in exports of fruits & vegetables and rice brainstormed on ways to bolster India’s position in the global export market of the two value commodities. The panellists touch based on various aspects of how India lacks from performing in the export market on the back of poor storage and logistics infrastructure, to being recognised as a cheap, unbranded and inconsistent raw product exporter.