Kharif support price to be 50% more than production cost: FM

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 02 Feb 2018 09:00:04



IN A major bonanza to farmers, the Government said on Thursday that support prices for the upcoming Kharif crops like paddy will be fixed at least 50 per cent higher than the cost of production, while raising farm credit target for the next fiscal by 10 per cent to Rs 11 lakh crore.

In an effort to take agriculture out of stress, it also announced a slew of measures such as setting up two separate funds amounting to Rs 10,000 crore for building infrastructure in sectors such as fishery, aquaculture and animal husbandry. Besides, it allocated Rs 2,000 crore for setting up agri- market infra fund and Rs 1,290 crore for a national bamboo mission as also Rs 500 crore for ‘operation green’ to check volatility in tomato, onion and potato rates and Rs 200 crore to encourage medicinal and aromatic crops cultivation.

Presenting a pro-farmer Union Budget 2018-19, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley reiterated the Government’s commitment to welfare of farmers saying that the emphasis is to generate higher income for farmers.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has given a clarion call to double the farmers’ income by 2022, he added. Jaitley said the Government considers agriculture as an “enterprise” and wants to help farmers produce more from the same land parcel at lesser cost and, simultaneously, realise higher prices for their produce. Asserting that the Government has been very sensitive to implementing BJP’s poll promise of providing to farmers at least 50 per cent more than the cost of the crop production, Jaitely said the Minimum Support Price (MSP) for the majority of rabi crops has been announced at least one and a half times the cost involved.