Agri Business

Bayer to support Niti Aayog’s AIM innovation initiatives in agriculture, healthcare

Our Bureau Chennai | Updated on April 13, 2021

Both organisations sign statement of intent for partnership

German crop protection, chemical and pharma major Bayer on Tuesday announced its partnership with the Union Government’s flagship initiative Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) of Niti Aayog, the Centre’s think-tank, in supporting innovation and entrepreneurship in agriculture and healthcare.

A statement from Bayer and AIM said that the initiative would be across the country supporting current and future programmes in both these sectors.

Bayer and AIM signed a statement of intent (SoI) for a strategic partnership to formalise the collaboration. The SoI will span the promotion of science education, advancing digital solutions and agri-tech to strengthen supply chains as well as healthcare projects.

Atal Tinkering Labs

AIM’s initiatives have been significant in advancing the country’s position on the Global Innovation Index. Through its 7,200-plus “Atal Tinkering Labs”, it has reached over three million students and its “Atal Incubation Centres” have created 30,000 jobs.

As part of this collaboration, both the organisations will attempt to use science and technology to benefit a large section of India’s population. Bayer will establish and support “Atal Tinkering Labs” in schools across India to foster the skill of creative problem-solving amongst students.

The statement also said that Bayer will explore opportunities to mentor school children, inculcate design thinking, problem solving and adaptive learning skills amongst them and support and adopt mutually agreed schools.

Bayer will mentor young innovators and start-ups and collaborate with them to further the cause of innovation. In future, Bayer would also explore association with the techno-preneurs from the ANIC (Atal New India Challenge) and ARISE (a national initiative to promote research & innovation and increase the competitiveness of Indian start-ups and MSMEs) programmes in digital solutions in the agriculture and healthcare sectors.

Focus on agri, health

D Narain, Senior Bayer Representative South Asia and Chief Executive Officer – Bayer CropScience Limited, said that the access to science-led innovation will also enhance the global competitiveness of India’s agriculture and healthcare sectors.

The growth of Indian agriculture and healthcare can be a major driving force for the country’s economic and social development. Accelerating innovation will expand the potential of these sectors, he said.

Bayer will also support AIM to mentor start-ups in agriculture and healthcare, driving successful collaborations towards a vibrant entrepreneurship ecosystem.

R Ramanan, Mission Director AIM, NITI Aayog, exchanging the virtual SoI with Bayer, said:, “The collaboration with Bayer is a long-term strategic one for Atal Innovation Mission as their areas of specialisation — Agriculture, Healthcare and Lifesciences — are areas of national importance, more so in the times of the pandemic. The partnership will be holistic in nature spurring and supporting knowledge and innovation at school, university and start-ups leveraging Bayer’s domain expertise, global reach and facilities.”

Narain said: “At this critical time, entrepreneurship and science-led innovation can play an important role in accelerating our progress towards doubling farmer incomes and expanding access to health solutions across India.”

Through its focus on digitisation, Bayer aims to drive scalable, creative technology solutions for healthcare and agriculture that enable last mile reach, the statement said.

Published on April 13, 2021

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