70K Hectares of Rubber Plantation Achieved Under INROAD in Northeast

ATMA Supporting Rubber Plantation in Northeast

ATMA Chief Press Meet at Guwahati on Rubber Plantation
70K Hectares of Rubber Plantation Achieved Under INROAD in Northeast 4

In a major boost to the rubber plantation drive in the Northeast, nearly 70,000 hectares of land have been brought under natural rubber plantation through the INROAD project over three years. This achievement represents one of the highest new plantation efforts ever in the Northeast in three years.

In alignment with the spirit of ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ (Self-Reliant India), the INROAD project, aimed at supporting the development of 200,000 hectares of rubber plantations in the North East, is being undertaken with active mentoring from the Ministry of Commerce & Industry.

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70K Hectares of Rubber Plantation Achieved Under INROAD in Northeast 5

INROAD marks the first project globally where the natural rubber-consuming industry (tyre sector) has partnered with government agencies to fund the plantation of natural rubber (NR). The Automotive Tyre Manufacturers Association (ATMA), the prestigious body of tyre manufacturers in the country, has collaborated with the Rubber Board of India for this project.

Also Read: India’s Leading Tyre Manufacturers Aim to Establish Natural Rubber Industries in the Northeast

Thus far, the project has resulted in the planting of over 30 million trees, benefiting nearly 80,000 beneficiaries across 93 districts in the North-eastern states. The INROAD project has also led to the rejuvenation of nurseries in the region, with planting material being procured from 81 certified nurseries.

“Despite post-Covid and logistical challenges, nearly 70,000 ha, or 86% of the project target, has been achieved against the initial three-year goal of 80,000 ha. This success is a testament to the commitment of four leading tyre companies in financially supporting the project and the hard work of the Rubber Board as the implementing agency,” said Mr. Anshuman Singhania, Chairman of ATMA.

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70K Hectares of Rubber Plantation Achieved Under INROAD in Northeast 6

“The project entails socio-economic development for resource-poor populations in these states. Planting in 200,000 hectares will not only benefit nearly 250,000 farmers and their families but also transform the plantation sector through comprehensive capacity building and skill training,” added Mr. Singhania.

Four member companies of ATMA (viz. Apollo, Ceat, JK & MRF) are financial stakeholders in the project, with the Rubber Board providing technical support and field-level connections.

For the project, the industry has committed Rs 1,000 crore towards the new plantation of 200,000 hectares and another Rs 100 crore towards improving the quality of Natural Rubber (NR) through best practices, skilling, and training. Out of the target of 200,000 hectares of new plantation under the project, Assam’s target is 100,000 hectares, followed by Tripura at 30,000 hectares.

During his visit to Guwahati, Mr. Singhania toured the new plantations in Assam and Meghalaya being undertaken under the project and met with beneficiaries firsthand. “Generating employment opportunities and livelihood security for marginal growers and uplifting the overall socio-economic status of the community are key objectives of the project. It was gratifying to see the project making a difference on the ground,” said Mr. Singhania.

India’s improved global ranking in the automotive sector augurs well for the stakeholder value chain, including the domestic tyre industry and NR sector. However, the NR demand-supply gap in India remains high. Currently, nearly 40% of the NR requirement is met through imports. It is estimated that by 2030, the country will need about 2 million tonnes of NR per year. The INROAD project aims to help meet some of the country’s growing requirements.

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