Medicinal and Aromatic Plants/Herbs

Medicinal and Aromatic Plants/Herbs

The Government is considering setting up of National Institute of Medicinal Plants (NIMP) for which an allocation of Rs. 100.00 crores has been made during the 12th Plan, out of which funds amounting to Rs. 50.00 lakhs are earmarked during the current financial year.  In this connection, the Government is in the process of identifying suitable land in the country.

As per information furnished by Pharmaceutical Export Promotion Council (Pharmexcil) of Ministry of Commerce and Industry, India’s export of AYUSH and value added products of medicinal plants is given in table below:

 For export promotion of traditional medicines, every year the Pharmexcil is participating in leading traditional medicines exhibitions such as Vita foods at Geneva, Supply Side West and Engredea at USA to showcase the AYUSH products at global platform.  Further, the Pharmexcil is organizing Reverse Buyer Seller Meets focused on herbals and Ayush products every year, enabling small and medium companies to develop relation / start business with importers and distributors of the traditional medicine extracts and products.

Botanical Survey of India (BSI), an organization under Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change has been carrying out survey and documentation of all plant resources of the country including medicinal / aromatic plants and herbs. The BSI is the nodal repository for Reference Plant Collections and at present houses about 3.2 million specimens in its different herbaria.

Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences (CCRAS) a Research Council of this Ministry is conducting Medico-ethno Botanical survey at different regions across the country through its peripheral institutes (viz. Itanagar-Arunachal Pradesh, Bangalore-Karnataka, Jhansi-Uttar Pradesh and Tari khet – Uttarakhand), for documenting and publishing the same from time to time.

Likewise, another research council of this Ministry viz. the Central Council for Research in Unani Medicine (CCRUM) is also collecting information on availability of medicinal plants in different forest areas under the survey and cultivation of Medicinal plants programme.

To prevent misappropriation of the country’s traditional medicinal knowledge, Ministry of AYUSH in collaboration with CSIR has established a Traditional Knowledge Digital Library (TKDL) which entails transcription of Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha codified texts into English, German, French, Japanese and Spanish.  The database is shared with patent offices of other countries and forms part of their pre-grant searches.

Under the Scheme of National AYUSH Mission (NAM) of the Ministry of AYUSH, there is a provision for providing assistance for payment @ 50% of the premium for a particular crop.  The Ministry of Tribal Affairs (MoTA) has formulated schemes to introduce Minimum Support Price (MSP) for Minor Forests Produce (MFP) including a few medicinal plants, collected from the wild.

National Medicinal Plants Board (NMPB) of Ministry of AYUSH has been implementing the Centrally Sponsored Scheme of “National Mission on Medicinal Plants” since 2008-09.  The Scheme is now a part of the National AYUSH Mission (NAM).  The Scheme is primarily aimed at supporting market driven cultivation of medicinal plants on private land with backward linkages through establishment of nurseries for supply of quality planting material, and forward linkages for post-harvest management, processing, marketing infrastructure, certification, crop insurance etc.

For commercial manufacturing of Ayurvedic Siddha and Unani drugs, license is required from the State Licensing Authority and Good Manufacturing Practices and observance of standards given in the Pharmacopoeias are mandatory.  Mention of shelf life or expiry date and use of excipients, preservatives etc. for the ASU Medicines has been provided.

Under Rule 161 of the Drugs & Cosmetics Rules 1945, provisions have been made for labelling on Ayurvedic, Siddha or Unani drugs in both English and Hindi languages.

The information was given by the Minister of State, AYUSH(I/C), Shri  Shripad Yesso  Naik in a written reply to a question in Lok  Sabha today.


Ban on Export of Meat and Meat Products

Countries like EU, China and Indonesia have not been allowing import of Indian buffalo meat citing reasons like prevalence of Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) in India. However, in general, there are no bans imposed by these countries.

There is a continuous growth in export of meat during last three years.

The Government has been flagging the issue of market access of Indian buffalo meat with EU, China and Indonesia from time to time on different platforms.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.

Growth Rate of Core Sector

            The Index of Eight Core Industries (ICI) measures performance of eight infrastructure industries, which includes, Coal, Crude Oil, Natural Gas, Petroleum Refinery Products, Fertilizers, Steel, Cement and Electricity compiled at the base of year 2004-05. The cumulative growth rate of ICI during April-February, 2014-15 was 3.8 % as compared to 4.2 % during corresponding period of previous year. However, the production index of various core industries has displayed variation in both direction and magnitude. Crude Oil, Natural Gas, Fertilizer, Petroleum Refinery Products and Steel industries have generally accounted for the lower growth in overall index during April-February, 2014-15 as compared to corresponding period of previous year. Industry wise details of the growth rates are given in the table below:

In general, low production of Crude Oil and Natural Gas have been accounted for inter-alia, by ageing fields, water/sand ingress, environmental problems, etc. and of Petroleum Refinery Products due to shut down of certain units on account of accidents. Further, the decline in production of Steel sector was mainly on account of procedural and infrastructural bottlenecks faced by the industry. Production of Fertilizer was affected due to non-availability of adequate natural gas, unforeseen shutdown and shortage of raw materials of phosphoric acid, etc.
The Government is taking steps to revive production in these industries which includes measures relating to policy, procedures, improving infrastructure and ensuring availability of required inputs.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.


Export Promotion Council

Export Promotion Councils (EPCs) are organizations of exporters, registered under Companies Act / Societies Registration Act, set up with the objective to promote and develop Indian exports. Each Council is responsible for promotion of a particular group of products / projects / services. EPCs are also eligible to function as Registering Authority to issue Registration-cum-Membership Certificate (RCMC) to its members, for which they have to fulfil the criteria laid down in the Foreign Trade Policy.

The products group for which EPCs have been formed include pharma products, engineering products, leather products, gems and jewellery, handicrafts, handlooms, software, telecom, plastic, sports goods, readymade garments, dyes, basic inorganic and organic chemicals, carpet, cashew etc.

No specific request has been made to States / UTs to constitute EPCs. However, in order to mainstream the States for boosting exports, all States have been asked to develop their export strategy and appoint a Senior Secretary as Export Commissioner.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.

Trading Restrictions on Sugar Industry

As per extant policy, the exports of sugar is free without quantitative restrictions subject to prior registration by DGFT. To enhance the production of new product raw sugar targeted for export market, the Central Government vide notification date 28.02.2014, provided incentive towards “Marketing and Promotion Service of Raw Sugar Production” for 2013-14 sugar season @ Rs. 3300/- per MT for February-March, Rs. 2277/- per MT for April-May, Rs. 3300/- per MT for June-July & Rs. 3371/- per MT for August- September. The scheme was further extended vide notification dated 27.02.2015 to provide incentive @ Rs. 4000/- per MT upto 14 Lakh MT for the current sugar season 2014-15 “(October- September)”.

Encouraging exports is a continuous process. The export of agricultural products depend on various factors including availability of surplus over and above the requirement of buffer stock if any including, strategic reserve, concerns of food security, diplomatic/humanitarian considerations, international demand and supply situation, quality standards in the importing countries, varieties traded and price competitiveness, need to balance between remunerative prices to the growers and availability of agricultural products to common man at affordable prices.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.


APEDA provides financial assistance to the exporters of horticulture produce including potato as under:

(i)                     Infrastructure Development: The exporters are supported for creation of infrastructure required for post-harvest handling, specialized cold storages like high humidity, controlled/modified atmosphere , mechanized grading, sorting and packaging. Financial assistance is provided for establishment of common infrastructure facilities by Central/State Government agencies wherein APEDA provides 90% grant-in-aid. A Sub-component "establishment of common infrastructure facilities in PPP mode by Government or Public sector agencies" has been introduced with 75% grant-in-aid to special purpose vehicles (SPV) by APEDA.

(ii)                   Market Promotion for brand publicity through advertisement, packaging, participation in international trade fairs etc.

(iii )       Quality Development for purchase of laboratory testing equipment, implementation of quality management systems like ISO/HACCP/TNC/BRC/TQM, GAP, reimbursement of testing charges for analysis of water, soil, residues of pesticides etc and for getting export oriented need based research conducted . For export testing purposes, APEDA has recognized 29 laboratories after following a very stringent procedure of assessment, audit and surveillance.

(iv)           Transport Assistance Scheme: to subsidize freight so as to make the produce cost competitive in global market.

Export of Potato is free as per Foreign Trade Policy of the Government.                

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.

Production and Export/Import of Tobacco

The Tobacco Board under the Ministry of Commerce & Industry regulates the production and promotion of export of Flue Cured Virginia (FCV) tobacco in the country.  The production and consumption of FCV tobacco in India during last 3 years, state wise is as follows:

FCV tobacco crop is a highly regulated and subjected to stringent restrictions on extent of area planted, quantity of tobacco produced and cured. Production of tobacco in excess of authorised limits and without registration from Board is subject to levy of heavy penalties deterring the farmers from doing so.Violations of the Tobacco Board Act and Rules entail appropriate punishments as laid out in the Act/ Rules. Tobacco Board has restricted horizontal expansion of the area under tobacco by not granting registration to new growers, and not issuing any licenses for construction of new barns creating additional curing infrastructure and not expanding FCV tobacco cultivation to new areas. Tobacco Board is encouraging farmers to go for alternative crops / cropping systems.

The quantum and value of tobacco and other value added products exported and imported from/to the country during the last 3 years (no data  is available for current year), country-wise is given as under : -

Tobacco Board is regulating the production of FCV tobacco based on market dynamics to ensure fair and remunerative prices to tobacco farmers. As a policy, Tobacco Board is not going for horizontal expansion of tobacco. Further, India is a signatory to WHO’s Frame work Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) whereby there is an obligation to implement the provisions of FCTC in India to reduce the consumption of tobacco. Appropriate supply management also helps in ensuring remunerative prices to growers.

Tobacco Board provides timely inputs to farmers.  Tobacco Board also implements many extension and developmental schemes with its wide network of qualified and trained technical staff in collaboration with Central Tobacco Research Institute (CTRI), Rajahmundry and National Institute of Plant Health Management (NIPHM) aimed at improving the yield and quality of the tobacco, mechanization in tobacco farming and transfer of technology product integrity/post harvest product management. Further, the Tobacco Board is participating in International Trade Fairs, Exhibitions, and International Tobacco Trade Forums. Advertisement in international print media, branding of Indian tobacco in international media, holding interaction between various stake holders, participation in the international fairs / exhibitions and buyer seller meets are other measures undertaken to encourage production / cultivation and export.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.


FDI Inflow By Multi Brand Foreign Companies

Government approved a proposal from M/s Tesco Overseas Investment Ltd., (TESCO) a U.K. Company for foreign investment of not less than US $ 110 million to carry out the business of Multi Brand Retail Trading in India. The Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) inflow reported by Reserve Bank of India from TESCO is Rs. 850 crores.

Government has not taken any decision with regard to implementation of FDI policy in Multi Brand retail trading.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.


SEZ in Mumbai

The notification for setting up a Special Economic Zone (SEZ) at Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra developed by M/s. Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) has been issued on 11.08.2014. The environmental clearance has been received on 5th December, 2014. The Master Plan and detailed project report has been submitted by M/s. L&T Infrastructure Engineering Limited on 31st March, 2015. Further, the area levelling activities and the tender process for protection wall of SEZ (phase-I) have been initiated.

As regards rehabilitation of displaced persons, State Governments have their own policies and procedures to deal with the same.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.


Export/Import of Animal Products

                    The quantum and value of export and import of animal products from/to the country during each of the last three years (Upto February, 2015), product-wise is as under.

 India’s share in world trade of Animal Products as per UN Comtrade data for 2013 is 0.89%. State wise share of animal products in World trade is not maintained.          

Some of the reasons for our negligible share in world trade are high consumption base, relatively low productivity, prevalence of various Livestock diseases such as FMD, impeding market access to Indian Livestock products, several quality, and non tariff issues  from major  competing countries, intermittent outbreaks of Avian influenza, lack of modern food processing infrastructure  etc.

            The Government has taken several steps to ensure quality of meat export is in line with the rules/regulations and requirements of the importing country.  The export of chilled and frozen meat is allowed subject to the provision specified to the gazette notification on raw meat (chilled and frozen) under Export (Quality Control and Inspection) Act, 1963.  Under the provisions of the above Rules, each consignment of meat is compulsorily required to be accompanied by a Veterinary Health Certificate issued by the designated authorities.   Meat consignments conforming to the notified standards and specifications and which are export worthy only are allowed for export.

Besides the step taken to maintain quality of Meat for International Markets, APEDA also takes following initiatives to promote other Scheduled products including Meat products

·        APEDA acts as facilitating body for helping exporters to overcome various export related issues

·        APEDA regularly disseminates information of various trade related aspects to the exporters.

·        APEDA organizes participation in International trade fairs/exhibitions to create awareness of Indian animal product exporters.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.


India’s Healthcare Portal Inaugurated at SAAARC Trade Mart in GES

Prime Minister of India inaugurated India’s Healthcare Portal at the ‘SAAARC Trade Mart’ in the Global Exhibition on Services, in ITPO, Pragati Maidan, in the presence of Ms Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister of State for Commerce & Industry (Independent Charge) and Mr J.P. Nadda, Minister for Health and Family Welfare. The Healthcare Portal was launched on the occasion of inauguration of  the three-day Global Exhibition on Services that commenced in New Delhi on 23rd April, 2015. The event was also attended by Mr Ravi Shankar Prasad,   Minister for  Communications and Information Technology and Ms Smriti Irani, Minister of Human Resource Development. The inauguration was followed by a short film on medical tourism in India.

            The Healthcare Portal was developed by the Department of Commerce, Govt of India and the Services Export Promotion Council (SEPC). The portal is the long awaited fulfilment of the need to have an authentic and dynamic information source which can effectively be used by any treatment seeker/potential medical tourist from across the globe.

            The portal is a comprehensive one-point information site and covers hospital-related and travel-related information on India. Presently, it covers 124 accredited medical facilities which include 93 medical centres, 30 Ayurveda and Wellness centres and 1 special category centre. 74 facilities are located in Tier I cites and the rest are in Tier II cities.

            The medical facilities on the Healthcare Portal are locatable by easy to search options by location, medical specialty, key procedures, language options available in hospitals and their certifications. The key medical and wellness procedures done by these institutions are highlighted. Associated details such as costs relating to treatment in hospitals in India, travel and visa formalities, last-mile connectivity, tariff options on stay, benefits of treatment in India, advance information on preparatory aspects in seeking medical care etc. are also available on the portal.

            There is a short film on India as a premier medical tourism destination on the portal itself.

             The Healthcare Portal can be seen at


Leather Parks

The Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP) is implementing a sub-scheme ‘Mega Leather Cluster (MLC)’ under Indian Leather Development Programme which aims at setting up of mega leather clusters in the country during 12th Plan. The major objective of developing Mega Leather Clusters is to create world-class infrastructure and to integrate the production chain in a manner that caters to the business needs of the leather industry so as to cater to the domestic market and exports. The minimum land area required for Mega Leather Cluster is 25 acres to be set up without tanneries and 40 acres with tanneries. Graded GOI assistance is provided upto 50% of the project cost excluding cost of land with maximum GOI assistance being limited to Rs. 125 crore which is detailed as below:

1.      MLC of 25-60 acres land (to be set up without tanneries) and 40-60 acres land (to be set up with tanneries)- GoI assistance limited to Rs 50 crore ;

2.      MLC of 61-100 acres land- GoI assistance limited to Rs 70 crore;

3.      MLC of 101-150 acres land- GoI assistance limited to Rs.105 crore;

4.      MLC of more than 151 acres land- GoI assistance limited to Rs 125 crore.

The sub-scheme is not location specific. It is demand driven and depends upon the project proposal received in this regard.

The outlay under the sub-scheme for the 11th Plan and 12th Plan period was Rs.300 crore and is Rs.100 crore respectively. While two Leather Parks were proposed during the 11th Plan at Chennai (Tamilnadu) and at Nellore (Andhra Pradesh), neither could be established.  It is proposed to provide support for establishment of atleast two MLCs all over India during 12th Plan period. The sub-scheme is demand driven and not location specific.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. NirmalaSitharaman in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.


Setting up of Industrial Townships

The National Manufacturing Policy promotes rationalization and simplification of business regulations. As such Government has launched ‘e-BIZ’ portal, which aims at providing various services of the Central Government, State Government and parastatal bodies through a single portal. 14 Central Government Services have been integrated with the portal. This helps improve ease of doing business in India by reducing the compliance burden on industry arising out of procedural and regulatory formalities. Ten States i.e. Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Odisha, West Bengal, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu have been identified for integration of State Services at pilot stage.

No specific investment proposals in respect of National Investment and Manufacturing Zones have been received from Japan and China. However, The Government of Japan has announced their financial support for Delhi Mumbai Industrial Corridor(DMIC) project to an extent of US$ 4.5 billion in the first phase for projects with Japanese participation through a mix of lending from Japan International Cooperation Agency(JICA) and Japan Bank for International Cooperation(JBIC). Master Plans for three nodes namely Tumkur(Karnataka), Krishnapatnam (Andhra Pradesh) and Ponneri (Tamil Nadu) under the Chennai-Bengaluru Industrial Corridor are also being prepared with the help of JICA.

Governmentnotified theNational Manufacturing Policy in 2011 with a view to, inter-alia, enhancing the share of manufacturing in GDP to 25% by 2022; increase the growth of manufacturing sector to 12-14% over the medium term; increase the rate of job creation in manufacturing to create 100 million additional jobs by 2022 ,and enhance global competiveness of Indian manufacturing through appropriate policy support. Subsequently, the Make-in-India programme has been launched in 2014 with a focus on attracting businesses to invest and manufacture in India and to make India a global manufacturing hub.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. NirmalaSitharaman in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.


World Economic Forum Meet

The annual meeting of World Economic Forum, 2015 was held at Davos, Switzerland during 21-24 January, 2015. The theme of World Economic Forum, 2015 was ‘The New Global Context’. The discussions took place according to a pre-set agenda with specific invitees as speakers for specific sessions. As regards India’s participation, issues discussed were related to how India was planning to revive and accelerate economic modernization, growth and job creation including issues related to subjects like agriculture, water, infrastructure, energy and power, trade and investment, urban mobility, etc. Several bilateral meetings and investment meets with counterpart ministers and top global CEOs were also held. The “Make in India” initiatives were prominently highlighted through the branding exercise as well as through the investment meets and bilateral meetings.

Government of India has been actively encouraging PPPs through several initiatives, which include establishment of an institutional mechanism to speedy appraisal of projects, eliminate delays, adopt international best practices and have uniformity in appraisal mechanism and guidelines. The appraisal mechanism notified includes setting up of the Public Private Partnership Appraisal Committee (PPPAC). A Viability Gap Funding Scheme for PPP projects has been created, which provides financial support in the form of grants to infrastructure projects undertaken through public private partnership with a view to make them commercially viable.

The scheme for ‘India Infrastructure Project Development Fund’ (IIPDF) has been launched to support PPP project preparation and development. The scheme supports up to 75% of the project development expenses. An institution to provide support to mainstreaming PPPs called 3P India was also announced in the Budget Speech 2014-15.

WEF’s Annual Meeting convenes the top global policy makers, business, academic and civil society leaders on a single platform to debate issues and arrive at solutions. In that context, the event served as the international launch pad for the “Make in India” initiatives among a global business audience, besides highlighting the positive changes in the policy framework for doing business in the country. Aspects related to opening up the Indian economy for FDI in various sectors of the economy and the measures taken to improve the Ease of Doing Business were highlighted.

This information was given by the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.

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