The agro-based chemical industry expects announcements in the Union budget relating to agriculture, such as incentivizing agricultural extension centers and easing the credit availability for farmers would add an impetus to the industry. This would help farmers access better products and technology thereby improving their yields and follow more sustainable practices.
The chemical industry in India, which is the sixth largest producer in the world, is expected to follow an accelerated growth path thereby doubling its global share in the next decade. This reflects the untapped potential of the sector, wherein several MNCs are focusing on the country for their manufacturing hub. “With the high importance of the chemical industry in the Indian economy, we expect from the government to address the bottlenecks and growth in the upcoming union budget,” said Abhay Udeshi, chairman, Jayant Agro.
From the castor oil chemical sector point of view, a long-term approach is required to encourage sustainable agriculture by rapid conversion to use of proven good agriculture practices, which include soil and water management. “It is time that the Union Budget considers its allocation to various farm input subsidies and instead spends more in agricultural investment by way of agricultural development & research, thereby increasing productivity and thus boosting farmers’ income and independence, he said
The budget should also consider introducing a constitutional amendment to shift agriculture from the State List to the Concurrent List, which would enable bold decisions on contract farming, land leasing, etc. This would transform agricultural sector and enable it to adopt suitable modern agricultural practices in line with the best practices available in the world.
There is also a need to bring down respective trade barriers between India, Asian countries and others. “Lastly, the industry which is on the path of continuous development needs to plow back a significant amount of profits for its growth. Hence, a reduction in corporate tax would promote research & development activities which would support the launch of new innovative products and lead to faster growth in the long run as well,” Udeshi said.