India holds the second largest agricultural land in the world comprising of 179.9 million hectares and Agriculture serves as the mainstay of livelihood for the majority of Indian population.
Steady investments in technology development, irrigation infrastructure, emphasis on modern agricultural practices and provision of agricultural credit and subsidies are the major factors contributing to agricultural growth.
The country has today emerged as a major player in the global agriculture market. Agriculture accounts for 14 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP) and about 11 per cent of India’s total exports; it is also an essential link in the supply chain of the manufacturing sector and at the same time constitutes a big market for industrial products. Currently, India is the world's largest rice exporter and second in terms of wheat exports. Horticulture exports have also seen good growth. India's agro exports during 2013–14 touched US$ 45 billion as against US$ 25 billion in 2011–12.
Given the good monsoon, the agriculture sector in India is likely to grow in the range of 5.2–5.7 per cent in the 2013–14 agriculture year (July-June), nearly three times as compared to the previous year. In FY 12, total food grain production in India reached an all-time high of 259.3 million tonnes (MT). Rice and wheat production stood at 105.3 MT and 94.9 MT respectively.
Total exports of Indian Agriculture and processed food products in the period April–February 2013–14 stood at US$ 20,331.05 million as compared to US$ 19,144.45 million during the corresponding period of the previous year, according to the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA).
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