The Ministry of Commerce, Govt. of India and APEDA, in association with NABARD and with the support of other Govt. of India departments such as Agriculture, Food Processing, Fisheries and Animal Husbandry and the State Governments, organized the National Stakeholders Consultation Meet on Agri-Export Promotion- Opportunities, Challenges & Way Forward in Mumbai on 09 August 2019.
Secretary, Commerce, GoI; Secretary, MoFPI, GoI; Additional Secretary, Agriculture, GoI; Chairman, APEDA; Joint Secretary, Fisheries; Joint Secretary, Commerce; Senior officers from Coffee Board, Tea Board, Spices Board and MPEDA; senior officials from State Governments and Banks participated in the consultation meet.
Shri Anup Wadhawan, Secretary to Govt. of India, Ministry of Commerce, during his opening remarks focused on the potential and opportunities in the agri export sector and initiatives of the Government of India. Emphasizing a coordinated effort being the key mover for ensuring growth in export of agri produce and processed food products he urged the States to identify nodal agencies, initiate measures to establish the entire logistic chain, traceability and other supportive measures. He also urged upon banks to support through credit.
Smt. Pushpa Subrahmanyam, Secretary, Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MOFPI) in her address emphasized the importance of food processing and the need for large number of aggregators at village/cluster level for all kinds agricultural produce including allied sectors. She informed that the Ministry of Food Processing is promoting a chain of clusters for food processing and various line departments need to encourage supporting necessary infrastructure for agro processing and exports in a more coordinated manner. She mentioned that NABARD being a key player in agriculture and rural development, need to play a critical role for facilitating the credit support to boost agri-export value chain.
Addressing the consultation meet Dr. H K Bhanwala, Chairman, NABARD emphasized on the linkage of exports and enhancement of income of farmers. He also stressed on the need to ensure ecosystem support for enhancing export of agricultural produce and processed food products. Pointing to the need for a collaborative effort, he urged the participants to contribute effectively in development of a road map for promotion of agri exports especially in view of the target of doubling of agri exports.
Dr Alka Bhargava, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare, Govt. of India focused on the need for ensuring market linkages for farmers to enable realization of remunerative prices of their produce. She mentioned that the Agriculture Ministry is coming out with a comprehensive policy for promoting 10000 FPOs in the country. However, the production of market driven quality produce of processable varieties is the need of the hour through appropriate policy interventions. She urged the State Governments to adopt the model contract farming act and APMC act for facilitating demand based production and appropriate market linkages.
The senior officials of the State Governments, Commodity Boards and other stakeholders made presentations on their initiatives in increasing the agricultural exports and integrating the export value chain with the primary stakeholders.
The meet ended with vote of thanks from the CGM, NABARD and the resolve on the part of all stakeholders to work together in a coordinated and supportive manner to achieve the goal of the Agriculture Export Policy.