Public Private Partnership in Agriculture

India is now one of the fastest growing emerging economies of the world, with a targeted annual growth rate of over 8 per cent. For the economy to grow at this pace, there is a strong need to upgrade the country's infrastructure services. Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) have been recognized as one of the most effective mechanisms to achieve this.

There is a scope to leverage PPPs as a relevant vehicle in the agriculture sector as well. Enhanced yield and productivity is a crucial need, with India still battling food insecurity and poverty. Technology, better inputs and improved farming practices can make this possible.

Over the past 60 years, Indian agriculture has recorded an average growth rate of 2.7 per cent per year, making it the slowest growing sector. The failure to consistently touch 4 per cent growth as targeted in the recent Five-Year Plans indicates the challenges we face in agriculture. Thus agriculture is a key sector for research, investment and development. There is an urgent need to work together to bring innovations via partnerships between the private and public sector, farmers and government to meet India's agriculture needs through new technology and intervention models.

Several partnerships have already been developed between the public and private sectors with the objective of achieving these goals. Monsanto India Limited (MIL) is an important stakeholder in the agriculture PPP space, through its multiple partnerships with State Governments. We have reached out to more than 9 lac farmers through PPPs alone and have helped improve yields and rural incomes significantly in the geographies these partnerships have been implemented.

Many farmer beneficiaries of these PPPs who hitherto barely managed to make ends meet, are now able to produce more, get fair returns for their produce in the markets and are realizing their aspiration for a better life. Their stories confirm the success and far reaching benefits of these partnerships.