Food and Agriculture & Union Budget for FY 2012 – Reading within and between the lines

FOOD INFRASTRUCTURE:

The Finance Minister’s announcement that modern storage infrastructure, such as silos would be eligible for “viability gap” funding is also a good initiative  to encourage modern storage practices, as  currently post harvest losses are estimated at 500 billion rupees ($11 billion) due to poor storage practices. Along with this, the finance minister has also reduced customs duty to 2.5 % on the import of all cold storage equipment which is seen by the industry as a complete package of relief provided to this sector.”

AGRICULTURE

“Increasing the agricultural credit limit to 4.75 trillion rupees ($104 billion) for farmers, the interest subvention to farmers paying their loans on time and capital infusion to NABARD (National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development) are progressive steps. The subsidy in the fertilizer sector and reduction in customs duty on micro-irrigation products will also boost agri-productivity.”


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