Need any help? Call us on

+44 (0) 1270 258200

Successful Indian Trade Mission for global…

Successful Indian Trade Mission for global player

5 March 2024

The Chemical Business Association (CBA), the voice of the chemical supply chain, has recently returned from a successful international trade mission. The internationally renowned Association was representing the UK chemical supply chain during the Chemicals Trade Mission to India, organised by the Department for Business and Trade (DBT).

The chemical and pharmaceuticals industry is one of the United Kingdom’s largest industries and the nations second largest export commodity. The Indian Chemicals market ranks 6th largest in the world by sales, with an estimated value of £174bn and employing over 2 million people. Continued development of the sector is also planned, with a planned government investment of £112 billion by 2030.

The Mission, which began with an open call by the DBT to British businesses operating across the chemical sectors – alongside the associated supply chains – was to facilitate collaboration between the UK and Indian chemical industries. It is the first physical chemicals mission to India since 2019 and representatives from the UK included well established businesses, as well as number of exciting innovative start-ups.

The intense programme, which took place from the 26th February to the 1st March and spanned multiple locations in Mumbai and across Gujarat, provided participants from both the UK and India the opportunity to delve deeper into the inner workings of the vast Indian chemical industry and create collaborative opportunities for investment and trade.

Whilst in Gujarat, the UK Mission met with representatives of the Federation of Gujarat, Industries (FGI) and Dehaj Industries Association and their members. They were also joined by Stephen Hickling, Deputy High Commissioner to Gujarat and Rajasthan.

As part of the itinerary in Mumbai, the UK Mission attended the Indian Chemical Council (ICC) Seventeenth Annual India Chemical Industry Outlook Conference & Exhibition, of which Great Britain & Northern Ireland was the Country Partner. The event included a Keynote speech from Harjinder Kang, His Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for South Asia and Deputy High Commissioner for Western India, while CBA CEO Tim Doggett spoke at a CEO Roundtable meeting organised by the ICC.

The programme concluded with the delegates meeting Ajitha Hathlia, Deputy Director, UK Trade & Exports, South Asia.

The Mission also provided invaluable business networking opportunities, with the hopes of facilitating and inspiring future collaboration, partnerships, and trade between the two Nations and the respective chemical supply chains, which would be further enhanced by an anticipated UK & India Free Trade Agreement, which has been under negotiation since January 2022.

Steve Hickling, the British Deputy High Commissioner to Gujarat and Rajasthan said, “It was a pleasure to support the successful Chemicals Industry Delegation in Gujarat. UK businesses should always consider the extensive and growing chemicals and pharmaceuticals industries in Gujarat, whether in terms of a competitive supply chain, or investment into the UK.”

He continued: “The Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office and Department for Business and Trade teams in India are always ready to support UK businesses looking for opportunities in both directions. UK Business shouldn’t hesitate to get in touch if they would like to explore opportunities in India.”

Commenting on the Mission, Tim Doggett, CEO of the CBA said, “I was particularly proud to be in India, together with long standing CBA members Alfa Chemicals and 2M Holdings, representing the British chemical supply chain, forging new relationships with a variety of people across all walks of the chemical supply chain and wider chemical industry in India.”

“These Missions are essential for the global chemical supply chain, facilitating collaboration and trade amongst industry and indeed Nations. Our involvement underlines a fundamental founding objective of the CBA, to establish and strengthen international trade, for the betterment of the entire chemical supply chain, which we have proudly done for over 100 years.”

Mottie Kessler, Chairman and CEO of 2M Holdings said, “The DBT Trade mission was meticulously organised, and doors were opened for us, visiting local producers, business associations and attending the ICC conference. The India chemical industry has exponentially advanced in all aspects of quality and sustainability and mutual UK-India opportunities have been created. It was an honour to be joined by UK companies, the CIA and the CBA who all demonstrated the strength of “Brand UK”.

Harjinder Kang, His Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for South Asia and British Deputy High Commissioner for Western India said, “It was great to see the Chemical Business Association during the UK Chemicals Trade Mission to India engaging extensively with Indian stakeholders to explore potential opportunities for collaboration for its member companies. With India being one of the fastest-growing economies in the world and having a significantly large-scale chemical industry, it provides a massive opportunity for the UK to tap into.”

He continues, “There is also scope to jointly explore innovative green tech to achieve decarbonisation in the chemical industry that lends itself naturally to the UK’s and India’s Net Zero commitments. I’m glad that the visiting delegation from the UK was able to fully-leverage this platform to forge strong business relations which will offer further growth opportunities and prosperity for the UK chemical industry and enhance business ties between both nations.”


About Chemical Business Association:

The Chemical Business Association (CBA), founded in 1923, has a long and illustrious heritage in delivering for its members and is the leading organisation representing the complete chemical supply chain. Many of its members are SME’s and include manufacturers, distributors, traders, warehouse operators, logistics and transport companies, as well as service providers and suppliers who collectively are the main chemical industry interface providing products and services to virtually every sector.

Now celebrating its centenary, some founding member organisations still remain. Such a diverse membership gives the distinct advantage of a 360-degree view and insight of the global chemical supply chain which, combined with the extensive and in-depth expertise of its staff, enables the CBA to provide wide-ranging services and support to its members, and to engage and work closely with Government and other key stakeholders in the UK and overseas.

The chemicals and pharmaceutical industry is the UK’s second largest industry and is the nation’s number one manufacturing exporter, and CBA members contribute in excess of £5 billion to the UK economy and employ over 10,000 people nationwide. Chemicals are vital for society and with more than 97% of all manufactured products containing inputs from the chemicals industry, CBA members handled in excess of 27 million tonnes and make over 2.25 million deliveries of chemicals last year. Health and safety, people and sustainability are at the heart of the CBA, and it leads and participates in many initiatives such as the ‘Responsible Care Programme’ which it has been part of since 1993.

The Chemical Business Association is the voice of the chemical supply chain.

Note to editors:

For further information please contact:

Alf Lombardi, Shrewdd Marketing


Telephone: +44 1422 363424

Back to News