Mega biotech show, Global Bio-India concludes in New Delhi

The three-day first of its kind mega event featured an investors meeting, an exhibition, webinars, hackathons, and business to business meetings and showcase key biotechnological innovations, products, services, and technologies

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The Secretary, Department of Biotechnology, Dr. Renu Swarup at the Closing Ceremony of the Global Bio-India Summit, 2019, in New Delhi on November 23, 2019.

New Delhi: According to the World Bank’s Doing Business Report 2014-18, India is now ranked first among South-Asian countries compared to 6th rank in 2014.

Indian Biotechnology industry’s economy was valued at $51 billion during 2018-19. The sector is recognized as one of the key drivers for contributing to India’s target to achieve an economy of USD 5 trillion by 2024.

In this backdrop, an international conference on the high growth sector of the biotechnology was recently held from 21st to 23rd November in New Delhi.

The event was focused on a broader agenda of deliberating on the opportunities and key challenges in areas ranging from bio-manufacturing, clinical trials and drug discovery, to capacity-building and creation of global supply chains. The deliberations were aimed at puting together a growth-oriented road-map for the sector.

The conference was organized  by the Department of Biotechnology and its affiliated public sector company, Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council, in partnership with Confederation of Indian Industry, Association of Biotechnology Led Enterprises, a not-for-profit pan-India forum that represents the Indian Biotechnology Sector, and Invest India, which is the National Investment Promotion and Facilitation Agency of India and act as the first point of reference for investors in India.

While inaugurating the event as its Chief Guest, the Union Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Harsh Vardhan pointed out towards the vision of Late Mr Atal Bihari Vajpayee and said, “The wave of IT 20 years ago was India Today and Biotechnology was the India Tomorrow, and it is turning into a reality. Young innovators & entrepreneurs in the Biotech sector with bright ideas in their mind shall come forward for the better of the country & the GOI shall support & assist their ideas to make it a reality.”

“Biotech is the life science, which is closest to the life of a human being & makes one’s life much easier. We have started Bio-Tech Kisan movement, where we are ensuring that the farming sector is protected,” added Dr Vardhan.

The inaugural session of the event witnessed the release of four reports including Indian Bio-Economy Report 2019; India: The Emerging Hub for Biologics and Biosimilars; Assessment of Indian Biotechnology Landscape in International Perspective; and Global Bio India Exhibit Catalogue 2019.

About 3,500 participants from close to 30 countries across the various categories within bioscience sector attended the programme. These delegates were from industry, academia, start-ups and research institutions.

Announcing the details DBT Secretary, Dr Renu Swarup, expressed confidence that the meet, which is being organised in India for the first time, bringing academia, innovators, researchers, start-ups, medium and large companies on the same platform, would help give a big boost to accelerate the innovation ecosystem in the country.

“Indian currently accounts for 3 per cent of the global biotechnology market. With the exponential manner in which it is progressing, the share could cross 10 per cent by 2014”, she said.

As per the union minister for petroleum and natural resources, Dharminder Pardhan, the government has instituted ₹300 cr of Start-Up fund. “I have advised my colleagues to have bio fuel as a key focus area and provide stimulus to the industry by giving handholding support and offtake guarantee to new and emerging entrepreneurs in the biofuel sector,” he said.

“We are committed to work towards greater decarbonisation and make India a gas based economy. Bio-energy will play an important role in this. With 600MT of biomass, which can be used as raw material, India remains the only country with the highest scope for growth of biofuels.”

“Biotechnology has a far-reaching effect in our economy as it affects our healthcare sector, health security, food security and environment. We need to generate more value creation through IP, which will drive the startup economy in the Biotechnology sector,” said Ms Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, Chairperson & MD, Biocon.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Naresh Trehan, Chairman & Managing Director, Medanta stated: “Convergence of Medical and the Biotechnology community will be a big boost to Transitional medicine. Establish a bridge between the medical and the biotechnology fraternity is important. India took the initiative to create its own biotech ecosystem. The goal that we have set to take biotech to another level would be absolutely effective for various fields.”

The Summit provided an opportunity to showcase the potential of India’s biotech sector to the international community, identify, create opportunities and deliberate on the key challenges in the areas of Bio-pharma, Bio-Agri, Bio-Industrial, Bio-Energy and Bio-Services and allied sectors.

In her remarks at the Closing Ceremony, Dr Renu Swarup said that going by the tremendous success of the mega event, the Department plans to turn the Global Bio-India into an annual event with support from all stakeholders.