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India Set to Become a Top Global Bio-Manufacturing Hub by 2025: Union Minister

Written by : Jayati Dubey

November 6, 2023

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Dr Jitendra Singh pointed out that India's bioeconomy has witnessed double-digit growth year-on-year in the last nine years, and India has now earned a spot among the top 12 biotechnology destinations globally.

Dr Jitendra Singh, the Union Minister for Science and Technology, expressed India's ambitious goal to be among the top five global bio-manufacturing hubs by 2025. He emphasised that biotechnology has the potential to become a crucial instrument of global trade and bioeconomy, contributing significantly to India's overall economy.

Dr Jitendra Singh made these remarks during the launch for "Global Bio-India – 2023," a major international event on biotechnology scheduled to take place at Pragati Maidan from December 4-6, 2023.

He pointed out that India's bioeconomy has witnessed double-digit growth year-on-year in the last nine years, all under the leadership of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. India has now earned a spot among the top 12 biotechnology destinations globally.

"In 2014, India's bioeconomy was valued at approximately $10 billion; today, it has grown to $80 billion. In just 8 to 9 years, it has expanded eightfold, and we aim to reach $300 billion by 2030," said Dr Jitendra Singh, emphasising the potential for bioeconomy to become a lucrative source of livelihood.

He added that India's biotechnology sector has evolved over the last three decades, significantly contributing to various sectors, including health, medicine, agriculture, industry, and bio-informatics.

Over the past eight years, biotech startups have surged, from 52 in 2014 to more than 6,300 at present. On average, three biotech startups are incorporated in India daily, aiming to provide viable technological solutions. Dr Singh emphasised that biotechnology is the technology of the future, especially as information technology has reached its saturation point.

"India has a huge wealth of bioresources, an unsaturated resource waiting to be harnessed and an advantage in Biotechnology especially due to the vast biodiversity and the unique bioresources in the Himalayas. Then there is the 7,500 kms long coastline and last year we launched the Samudrayaan which is going to dig the biodiversity beneath the seas," he said.

Dr Singh highlighted the significance of biotechnology startups, which combine biology research and manufacturing processes, focusing on living systems such as micro-organisms and self-cultures.

Biotechnology offers a cleaner, greener environment that aligns with well-being, generating lucrative livelihood sources and alternative, bio-based products like food additives, bioengineering ties, and animal feed products. Dr. Jitendra Singh also mentioned the success of Agritech startups, particularly in areas such as the Aroma Mission and lavender cultivation.

About 4,000 individuals are engaged in lavender cultivation, earning significant income. Notably, many do not possess high qualifications but have demonstrated innovation in their approach.

The Department of Biotechnology has actively supported research and development innovations in advanced biofuels and 'waste-to-energy' technologies. He envisions a future where waste is reduced to zero, with everything being recycled.

Biotechnology has become an appealing career option for Indian youth, with tools like synthetic technology, genome editing, microbial bioresources, and metabolic engineering becoming prominent in discussions.

Dr Singh highlighted the Prime Minister's vision of an Atmanirbhar Bharat, emphasising that India's vaccine strategy, Mission Suraksha, brought together the pharma industry, academia, and the private sector to address current and future challenges.

India is now recognised as the global vaccine hub, with a strong emphasis on preventive healthcare. The successful missions of Chandrayaan-3 and the DNA vaccine have positioned India's scientific community globally, with developed countries seeking inspiration from India.

He also pointed out the importance of working with the private sector to unlock India's untapped potential, aligning with the vision of Anusandhan National Research Foundation (NRF), envisioned by Prime Minister Modi. The NRF will spur research and development, positioning India as a global R&D leader within the next five years.

The NRF is expected to receive nearly 70% of its budget of INR 50,000 Cr over five years from non-governmental sources. It will combine scientific and technological innovation with the wisdom of humanities and social sciences, facilitating industry linkages to create an ideal innovation ecosystem.

Dr Singh called for broader synergy across professions to achieve the "Amrit Kaal" goals over the next 25 years, emphasising that collaboration involving science, government, and the nation as a whole is the way forward.


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