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India’s Bio-Economy and Space Economy to Propel Future Growth, Announces Union Minister Dr. Jitendra Singh

New Delhi: Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Science & Technology, MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy, and Space, Dr. Jitendra Singh, highlighted the pivotal role of Bio-Economy and Space Economy in India’s future growth trajectory, emphasizing their contribution to the country’s economic prowess, which currently boasts the highest growth rate globally at over 6%.

Addressing the media, Dr. Jitendra Singh announced the launch of the GenomeIndia Flagship Programme, a groundbreaking initiative involving the sequencing of 10,000 genomes. Underlining the remarkable growth of India’s bio-economy, he noted its expansion from $10 billion in 2014 to over $130 billion in 2024, marking a 13-fold increase over the past decade. The Biotechnology Sector has witnessed substantial progress, positioning India among the top 12 bio-manufacturers globally.

The GenomeIndia project, a significant step forward, aims to sequence the genomes of 10,000 healthy individuals from 99 communities, covering diverse linguistic and social groups. Dr. Jitendra Singh emphasized the necessity of finding indigenous solutions for India’s unique genetic variations and healthcare challenges, positioning the country as a leading player in advanced scientific endeavors.

In the interim budget of 2024-25, the government introduced a new scheme for Bio-manufacturing and Bio-foundry, spearheaded by the Department of Biotechnology (DBT). This initiative aims to promote green growth, offering eco-friendly alternatives such as biodegradable polymers, bio-plastics, bio-pharmaceuticals, and bio-agri-inputs, thus transforming the manufacturing paradigm.

Highlighting India’s progress in the Space Economy, Dr. Jitendra Singh estimated the current size at $8.4 billion, with the potential to reach $44 billion by 2033 through the implementation of the Indian Space Policy 2023. Drawing attention to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s review of the Gaganyaan Mission and the conferment of astronaut wings upon four astronauts, Dr. Jitendra Singh emphasized the expanding horizons of India’s Space Economy.

Describing the GenomeIndia Project as a watershed moment, Dr. Jitendra Singh emphasized its role in genetic-based remedies and its positive impact on the public healthcare system. The project aims to create a reference genome for the Indian population, considering the diverse genetic variations across more than 4,600 population groups in the country.

Secretary of DBT, Dr. Rajesh Gokhale, and Advisor, DBT, Dr. Suchita Ninawe, highlighted the department’s achievements in biotechnology and the restructuring efforts to maximize socio-economic outcomes. The GenomeIndia project, undertaken by a consortium of 20 national institutes, signifies collaborative and mission-oriented scientific partnerships, placing India on the world map of genome research.

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