CropLife India, an association of 15 R&D driven crop science companies organised its 40th Annual General Meeting, which witnessed the congregation of the Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Parshottambhai Rupala, senior government officials and industry experts on the cause of supporting the farmer.
The virtual conference, included an Inaugural Session, “Policy level changes required to make agrochemicals, a champion sector”; a panel discussion on “Policy & Regulatory Roadmap for Agrochemicals Sector” and a valedictory session.
Addressing the meeting, Parshottambhai Rupala, said, “India considers agrochemical industry as a champion sector and is all set and open to align the sector with the best international practices and regulatory reforms; by reducing registration timelines of crop protection products.”
“The crop protection industry should share propositions to make crop protection products which are newer, safer and more effective, for the benefit of the farmers. The government is also looking at a cluster approach for imparting quality education and extension services for the farmers and industry should support this initiative,” Rupala added.
Dr. Ashok Dalwai, CEO, National Rainfed Area Authority, Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, opined, “The impact of climate change has a direct and indirect fallout on pests, which creates impact on crops. The Prime Minister said, we need to be ‘Aatmanirbhar’, which would mean positioning ourselves in the global market as the new workshop for the world. We should consider the following dimensions for the roadmap; taking care of end consumers; taking care of the farmers’ interest; concern for the country’s employment and ecological needs – biodiversity.”
“India has a virtuous infrastructure and regulatory system to promote. India needs to be the market hub, to be in the national market. Going forward, globally accepted policy incentives such as data protection; digital technology like drones and services solutions from industry and channel partners will help achieve our goals,” Dr. Dalwai added.
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Samir Kumar Biswas, Additional Secretary, Department. of Chemicals & Petrochemicals, Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilizers congratulated the industry on this momentous occasion and shared, “Government and industry would work together to bring the recommendations and international best practices, to achieve national goals.”
Dr. SK Malhotra, Agriculture Commissioner, Government of India said, “India needs new molecules, which are safe and effective. Industry needs to come forward and submit the list of such molecules, including higher active ingredients; aligned with international standards; which will be welcomed. The government appreciates industry’s contribution in fight against invasive pests.”
Speaking on the stable and science based policy and regulatory regime, Dr. KC Ravi, Chairman, CropLife India shared that the need for a predictable, stable and science based policy and regulatory regime for the proper growth of the crop protection sector is imperative. A forward looking progressive Pesticide Management Bill 2020, which promotes innovation and new product introduction to address the current and upcoming challenges faced by farmers; while paving the way with introduction of cutting edge technologies like Artificial Intelligence and drones.
While welcoming the participants, Asitava Sen, CEO, CropLife India said, “India is the 4th largest producer of agrochemicals in the world and looking at the potential the Government of India has declared it as one of the 12 Champion Sectors, where India can be a critical player in the global supply-chain. This transformation will require close partnership between the government, the industry and the farmers.”
In the Annual General Meeting, CropLife India members unanimously elected the new office bearers: Dr. KC Ravi, Chief Sustainability Officer, Syngenta India as Chairman and Sanjiv Lal, MD & CEO, Rallis India and Anil Kakkar, Vice President – Sales & Marketing, Sumitomo Chemical India as Vice Chairmen of the Board of Directors for CropLife India.