New Delhi [India]: Addressing the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development’s (NABARD) board on Monday, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said that the agriculture credit flow target of Rs. 11 lakh crore for 2018-19 is achievable by the banking sector.
Jaitley said that this target would contribute to the momentum towards doubling the farmers’ income by 2022.
Arun Jaitley emphasised that the banking sector must invest in long term assets to improve the capital formation in agriculture sector.
He also stressed that investments in financial technology over the past few years have brought in efficiency, speed and transparency in the rural financial eco-system.
Earlier in the Union Budgets 2018-19, Jaitley reviewed the funds announced and stressed that there is a need for all the stakeholders to collaborate to improve farmers’ income.
On February 1 2018, while announcing the Union Budget, Arun Jaitley said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had given a clarion call to double farmers’ income by 2022, when India celebrates its 75th year of Independence.
“Our emphasis is on generating higher incomes for farmers. We consider agriculture as an enterprise and want to help farmers produce more from the same land parcel at lesser cost and simultaneously realize higher prices for their produce,” he had said while announcing a slew of new initiatives for the farm sector in Budget 2018-19.
Jaitley announced that the government had decided to keep Minimum Support Price (MSP) for all hitherto unannounced crops of Kharif at least at one and half times of their production cost.
As a primary measure, the government announced raising institutional credit for agriculture sector to Rs. 11 lakh crore for the year 2018-19 from Rs. 10 lakh crore in 2017-18.
He also announced the launching of ‘Operation Greens’ to address price volatility of perishable commodities like potatoes, tomatoes and onions, at an outlay of Rs. 500 crore.
The Finance Minister further announced 100 percent deduction in respect of profits to Farmer Producer Companies (FPCs), having turnover upto Rs. 100 crore, for a period of five years from FY 2018-19, in order to encourage professionalism in post harvest value addition in agriculture. (ANI)