India's sanitation market is likely to reach US$60 billion by 2021, and the private sector should come forward to exploit the potential of the emerging sanitation market, said a senior Indian government official on Thursday.
Speaking at a sanitation conclave in New Delhi, Secretary in the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation Parameswaran Iyer said that the central government was working on four verticals to achieve the target of open defecation free (ODF), including fecal sludge management, rural piped water supply, grey water management and solid waste management.
He further added that all this will require active participation of the corporate sector to invest in the treatment and waste management. The government will also provide "swachh" (clean) credit facilities to small entrepreneurs involved in the business of rural waste management, he stated.
Awareness regarding sanitation has increased among the general public in India especially during the past five years, after Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the "Swachh Bharat Abhiyan" (Clean India Mission).
"Sanitation coverage has crossed 98 percent, over 100 million toilets have been built for our people," Modi had stated in parliament in February. Modi's "Clean India Mission" saw around half-a-million villages been declared ODF in the past five years.