Chemical industry will grow to $226 bn by 2020: Nirmala Sitharaman

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MUMBAI: The domestic chemical industry is expected to grow to $226 billion by 2020, Union Minister of State (independent charge) for Commerce and Industry Nirmala Sitharaman said here today.

The global chemical industry is estimated at $4.3 trillion, with Indian chemical industry accounting for $147 billion in 2015. The Indian chemical industry is expected to grow to $226 billion by 2020, Sitharaman said, after presenting awards to leading chemical exporters at a function here.

“While exports have shown a decline of 7.8 per cent from $12.66 billion in 2014-15 to $11.67 billion in 2015-16, that is in terms of value, in terms of volume the exports have shown a remarkable growth of 7.51 per cent from 52.9 lakh tonnes in 2014-15 to 56.9 lakh tonnes in 2015-16, which is a positive sign,” Sitharaman said.

The Budget 2017-18 focuses on boosting the industry, and reduction in corporate tax for MSMEs by 5 per cent and the new Trade Infrastructure Export Scheme will help exporters reduce transaction costs and become globally competitive, she said.

Also, initiatives such as CBEC’s Single Window Interface for Facilitating Trade (SWIFT), Make in India, relaxation of environmental norms for the chemical industry and the expected GST roll-out would spur the growth of chemical sector, Sitharaman added.

The domestic chemical industry, 3rd largest producer in Asia and 12th in the world, is a key constituent of Indian economy, she said.

India is the fourth largest producer of agrochemicals. The Basic Chemicals and Dyes Export Promotion Council (Chemexcil) has played a key role in promoting exports of the products in its basket by showcasing the capabilities of Indian chemical industry to the world, the Minister said.