India International Trade Fair, the premier event brought about by India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO), the trade promotion agency of the government of India, started in New Delhi today. President Pratibha Patil inaugurated the event at Pragati Maidan.
The event, in its 27th year now, will conclude on November 27. Providing a common platform for manufacturers, traders, exporters and importers, this year the theme of the fair is “Processed Food and Agro-Industries”. Patil said, “The theme is of special relevance globally too, as we are grappling with the formidable task of eradicating hunger and poverty from our planet.”
The president highlighted the role of women in the preservation of soil and forests, and stressed on the “need to catalyse agricultural growth through holistic agricultural development strategies that should include women.”
“The agriculture scenario in the country is gradually looking up. Our agricultural exports increased last year by around 20 per cent over the previous year, and its contribution to the overall exports of the country is now around 7 per cent,” she stated. Further, “Processing of agricultural goods significantly adds value to agricultural produce and we look at it as strong emerging sectors in India,” she added.
In addition to participation from states and union territories of India, the fair will witness international exhibitors participation from 23 countries – Australia, Belgium, Germany, Holland, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Myanmar, Oman, Philippines, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Suriname, Spain, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Syria.
In 2006, the fair attracted more than 7,500 Indian companies and 350 overseas companies from 34 countries. Over 300,000 business visitors and three million general visitors visited the 14-day event.