Minister Stewart to Lead Agriculture Trade Mission to India
Agriculture Minister Lyle Stewart will lead a week-long trade mission to India, visiting the cities of Delhi, Jaipur and Mumbai.
“Saskatchewan is Canada’s top exporter to India and it is important for us to strengthen this relationship and find new opportunities with one of the world’s fastest-growing economies,” Agriculture Minister Lyle Stewart said. “We value our partnership with India and recognize the importance to both our economies.”
In 2015, Saskatchewan exports to India totalled more than $1.8 billion with the top exports being lentils, peas and potash. Last year was a record-breaking year as agriculture exports to India exceeded the $1 billion mark for the first time with a total of $1.5 billion. While in India, the delegation will participate in a variety of activities, including the Global Pulses Conclave, roundtables with importers and meetings with government representatives and business leaders.
“This mission will help solidify our trade relationship for established products including pulse crops and potash, while also allowing us to have conversations about future imports such as canola, flax and oats,” Stewart said. “Face-to-face meetings help Saskatchewan better understand India’s needs, identify new areas for collaboration and trade and discuss any barriers.”
Saskatchewan relies on international markets to buy goods as only about five per cent of what the province produces is consumed locally. With the United Nations declaring 2016 the International Year of Pulses, Saskatchewan’s presence in India solidifies a larger commitment to increase awareness and use of pulses worldwide.
The Government of Saskatchewan is partnering with the India Pulses and Grain Association to support its pulse awareness plan to make pulse crops top of mind for farmers, businesses, governments and most importantly consumers. Pulses are a very important crop to both countries with Saskatchewan accounting for 95 per cent of Canadian pea exports to India and 100 per cent of Canadian lentil exports to India in 2015.
The trade mission departs February 13 and returns February 20.
Representatives of Saskatchewan Pulse Growers, SaskCanola and Saskatchewan Trade & Export Partnership will also be present for portions of the mission.