Highlighting the role played by agriculture in India, sketch the scenario of investment in the Indian agricultural sector in the recent years.

Model Answer

Answer: Agriculture plays a vital role in the Indian economy. Over 70 per cent of the rural households depend on agriculture. Agriculture is an important sector of Indian economy as it contributes about 17% to the total GDP and provides employment to over 60% of the population.

Role of agriculture in Indian economy:

  • Share in National Income
  • Largest Employment Providing Sector
  • Contribution to Capital formation
  • Providing Raw Material to industries
  • Market for Industrial Products

Investments: According to the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, the Indian food processing industry has cumulatively attracted Foreign Direct Investment equity inflow of about US$ 10.24 billion between April 2000 and December 2020.Some major investments and developments in agriculture are as follows:

  • From 2017 to 2020, India received ~US$ 1 billion in agritech funding. With significant interest from the investors, India ranks third in terms of agritech funding and number of agritech start-ups. By 2025, Indian agritech companies are likely to witness investments worth US$ 30-35 billion.
  • In March 2020, Fact, the oldest large­­­­­­­‑scale fertiliser manufacturer in the country, crossed one million production and sales mark.
  • Nestle India will invest Rs. 700 crore (US$ 100.16 million) in construction of its ninth factory in Gujarat.
  • In November­­­­­­ 2019, Haldiram entered into an agreement for Amazon’s global selling program to E-tail its delicacies in the United States.
  • In November 2019, Coca-Cola launched ‘Rani Float’ fruit juices to step out of its trademark fizzy drinks.
  • Two diagnostic kits developed by Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) – Indian Veterinary Research Institute (IVRI) and the Japanese Encephalitis lgM ELISA were launched in October 2019.
  • Investment worth Rs. 8,500 crore (US$ 1.19 billion) have been announced in India for ethanol production.

India is expected to achieve the ambitious goal of doubling farm income by 2022 with increased investment in agricultural infrastructure such as irrigation facilities, warehousing and cold storage. Going forward, the adoption of food safety and quality assurance mechanisms such as Total Quality Management (TQM) including ISO 9000, ISO 22000, Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP), Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and Good Hygienic Practices (GHP) by the food processing industry will offer several benefits. The agri export from India is likely to reach the target of US$ 60 billion by the year 2022.

Subjects : Economy

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