2 Dec 2019

Agriculture Export Policy-2018

Source: PIB & Ministry of Commerce

The Government has come out with a policy to double farmers’ income by 2022. Exports of agricultural products would play a pivotal role in achieving this goal. In order to provide an impetus to agricultural exports, the Government has come out with a comprehensive “Agriculture Export Policy” aimed at doubling the agricultural exports and integrating Indian farmers and agricultural products with the global value chains.

The Agriculture Export Policy has the following vision:         

“Harness the export potential of Indian agriculture, through suitable policy   instruments, to make India global power in agriculture and raise farmers’ income.”

Objectives:

Objectives of the Agriculture Export Policy are as under:

  • To double agricultural exports from present ~US$ 30+ Billion to ~US$ 60+ Billion by 2022 and reach US$ 100 Billion in the next few years thereafter, with a stable trade policy regime.
  • To diversify our export basket, destinations and boost high value and value-added agricultural exports including a focus on perishables.
  • To promote novel, indigenous, organic, ethnic, traditional and non-traditional Agri products exports.
  • To provide an institutional mechanism for pursuing market access, tackling barriers and deal with sanitary and phytosanitary issues.
  • To strive to double India’s share in world agri exports by integrating with the global value chain at the earliest.
  • Enable farmers to get the benefit of export opportunities in the overseas market.

The recommendations in the Agriculture Export Policy have been organised in two categories Strategic and Operational – as detailed below: 

The policy recommendations in this report are organized into two broad categories – strategic and operational.

Strategic

  1. Policy Measures: Discussions with public and private stakeholders across the agricultural value chain highlighted certain structural changes that were required to boost agricultural exports. These comprise of both general and commodity-specific measures that may be urgently taken and at little to no financial cost. The subsequent gains, however, are aplenty.
  2. Infrastructure and logistics: Presence of robust infrastructure is a critical component of a strong agricultural value chain. This involves pre-harvest and post-harvest handling facilities, storage & distribution, processing facilities, roads and world-class exit point infrastructure at ports facilitating swift trade. Mega Food Parks, state-of-the-art testing laboratories and Integrated Cold Chains are the fundamentals on which India can increase its agricultural exports. Given the perishable nature and stringent import standards for most of the food products, efficient and time-sensitive handling is extremely vital to agricultural commodities
  3. A holistic approach to boost exports: Agricultural exports are determined by supply-side factors, food security, processing facilities, infrastructure bottlenecks and several regulations. This involves multiple ministries and state departments. Strategic and operational synergy across ministries will be key to boosting productivity and quality.
  4. Greater involvement of State Governments in Agriculture Exports

Operational Recommendations

1.Focus on Clusters: There is a need to evolve and put in place institutional mechanism for effective involvement and engagement of small and medium farmers for entire value chain as group enterprise(s) within the cluster of villages at the block level for select produce(s). This will help to realize the actual benefit and empowerment of the farming community to double their income through the entire value chain

2.Promoting value-added exports

      1. Product development for indigenous commodities and value addition
      2. Promote value-added organic exports
      3. Promotion of R&D activities for new product development for the upcoming markets
      4. Skill development

3.Marketing and promotion of “Brand India”

4.Attract private investments in export-oriented activities and infrastructure.

5.Establishment of Strong Quality Regimen

6.Research and Development: Agricultural research and development (R&D) led by private industry along with higher infrastructure spend by the government will be the key to boosting agricultural exports.

7.Miscellaneous – Creation of Agri-start-up fund: Entrepreneurs are to be supported to start a new venture in Agri products exports during their initial period of establishment.