Dec. 12, 2022
Crop Care Federation of India (CCFI) has appealed to Shri Arun Baroka, IAS Secretary Chemicals for expediting PLI Scheme and for notifying operational guidelines for its Implementation.
In their representation which was initially submitted during December 2020, followed by revised proposal during May 2022, and again lately, CCFI has highlighted the importance of agrochemicals as a major input for the Indian farmers, now considered as a Champion sector. The Industry is committed for doubling the farmer’s income by reducing the crop losses in the farmers’ fields, during transit and in storage.
″Cost to the farmers on Agrochemicals is just about 4 percent of the total value of the produce, whereas it reduces crop losses of around 22 percent pre and post harvest. Dependence on Chinese imports for vital products is a high risk in certain important crop-pest segments, endangering security of Indian agriculture. We can certainly compete with China and gain leadership in agrochemicals once industry establishes critical manufacturing capacities through inclusion in the PLI scheme″ stated Harish Mehta, Senior Advisor CCFI.
The core group of CCFI members has compiled, after detailed deliberations, the list of intermediates, Technicals and Formulations for indigenous manufacturing by enhancing local capacities through new investment.
CCFI is of the view that fresh investment plans are getting delayed in order to avail the benefit under this scheme. For its implementation a corpus for Rs. 500 Cr. should be provided by the government during next 2-3 years. The plan is to make India as a manufacturing hub with the aim to follow the policy of ″Make in India″ towards Atmanibhar Bharat.
SURGE IN IMPORTS
Unfortunately imports of agrochemicals have been on an increase even during the COVID-19 period and in fact more there after:
Total Agrochemical Imports Rs. Cr.
Est. % of Readymade formulations imported by MNCs or traders
The figure for 2021-22 may only be indicative as several shipments held up at ports of origin have reached during 2022-23.
″We are unable to quantify the correct purity profile in imported formulation resulting in the supply of substandard material, possibility of expired stock with a toxic profile. The industry expects an investment of Rs. 12,000 Cr. in next three years if the proposal is implemented as per Indian Industry recommendation″ said Mr. Mehta to support the industry contention.
CCFI finds that the steps taken by the Government of India for PLI Scheme in various sectors as progressive and commendable step.
The compilation presented to Ministry includes List of 35 Intermediates which are currently being imported in order of importance as under.
List of top intermediates
Lambda cyhalothrin acid
N-(phosphonomethyl) iminodiacetic acid (PMIDA),
2,6-diisopropyl-4-phenoxy phenyl thiourea
2,6-Diethyl Aniline, Chloro Acetyl Chloride, n-Propoxy Ethylchloride
List of Technicals & Formulations
In the category of Technicals, CCFI has submitted the list of 81 Technicals which are currently being imported along with the source of Import.
In case of Formulation currently being imported is a list of 89 Formulations which constitute major chunk of imports by MNCs and Traders.
As assured by Government of India the scheme is exclusively for rewarding indigenous manufacturers and not applicable on any imported agrochemicals.
CCFI also submitted a list of 31 Technicals being imported despite having indigenous manufacturing capacity and technical capabilities by the indigenous registrants.
In order to effectively compete with China, the Indian companies also need strong support from the Government and bureaucracy for ‘Ease of doing business’