India's participation at Anuga this year has evinced great business interest from Germany and other international markets to invest in the Ministry of Food Processing Industries of India (MoFPI) and Government of India's, mission to reduce food wastage, creating a global 'food bank', and making India a global 'sourcing hub'. In a move to strengthen the Indo-German economic partnership in food processing sector, a high-level delegation, led by Harsimrat Kaur Badal, engaged industry leaders in Cologne, Germany.
Henriette Reker, Mayor of Cologne in her special welcome to India highlighted food security benefits that go well beyond the geographic limits of the two nations. The two countries have great opportunities to collaborate in multiple sectors including technology development, vocational trainings, market access, and research and development (R&D) efforts to instigate innovations in sectors such as food processing and packaging equipment. The recently launched 'Make in India - Mittelstand' initiative facilitating entry of German SMEs, and Germany's dual Vocational Education and Training (VET) system for building efficient pool of skilled human resource is being well leveraged, and Germany is looking to further strengthen its economic partnership with India.
"Germany is among India's most important partners bilaterally and in global context, and India is ready with open arms to welcome German companies. Anuga, which is the number one trading place in the world, gave us the right platform to interact with various global players in the food industry," said Badal.
India's position as the 'global sourcing hub', with its geographically and strategically aligned location for food importing nations, took precedence during the minister's visit. Key areas of investment to prevent food loss and wastage globally, both at the harvest and transit levels (estimated at 1.3 billion tonnes annually by FAO), reduction of environmental pollution (estimated at 3.3 billion metric tonnes globally) and countering malnutrition, were discussed.
A record 107 countries participated at the trade fair and the Ministerial delegation's interaction with globally acclaimed food processing companies has enthused many including BDSI; Malaysian External Trade Development Operation; Federation of German Food and Drink Industries; Viba Sweets; Cranswick Country Foods among others, confirming participation in the upcoming World Food India (WFI) Summit, a three-day mega international event, organized by MoFPI, scheduled to be held on November 3 to 5, at New Delhi, India, to be inaugurated by the Prime Minister of India.
"By 2050, world population is going to be over 9 billion, and demand for food is expected to increase by 50 percent. Where only 10 percent of food is being processed currently in India, we see huge potential to co-develop and optimize food processing capability, to serve the world food market! The WFI summit, is first-of-its-kind platform to foster partnerships aimed at 'transforming food economy', and we welcome food processors, machine manufacturers, technology suppliers and refrigeration companies, to come to India and expand their business opportunities," said Badal.
The MoFPI is gearing up to host 2,000 companies from 30 countries at the #WorldFoodIndia 2017, with Germany as one of the partner countries. Nearly 50 global CEOs of leading food processing companies will be attending the event and many of them will be participating at the roundtable of the CEOs with Prime Minister/ Finance Minister of India. The summit has been conceptualized in line with the 'Make in India' vision of the Modi Government, aimed at driving 'ease of doing business' in 'farm to fork'.
India, is not only the fastest growing economy with GDP to reach 4.5 trillion US dollar by 2025, it has a USD 600 billion retail sector, of which 70 per cent is food retail, and is set to treble by 2020! The Indian Food Processing Industry is an attractive market for global investors to expand their presence across the food processing value chain. Factors such as, strategic geographic location and proximity to food-importing nations, proactive policy reforms, attractive fiscal incentives, large skilled workforce and single-window clearance are some of the opportunities that investors could leverage.
Economic reforms like 100 percent FDI in retail of food produced and/or manufactured in India, Goods and Service Tax (GST), construction of Mega Food parks and cold chain grids throughout the country, have made the ecosystem favorable for investment.
Germany is the seventh largest foreign direct investor in India since January 2000. German FDI in India in 2016-2017 was to the tune of USD 1.1 bn. Presently, more than 1600 Indo-German collaborations and over 600 Indo-German joint ventures are in operation. While the food processing industry in Germany is well-developed and globally acclaimed, its counterpart in India has been growing above average and has been forecasted to ambitiously speed up in the next two to three years.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)