Budget 2018-19 : Doubling farmers income
What is the issue ?
- The Budget 2018-19 looked on target to achieving the Prime Minister's vision of 'doubling farmers income by 2022'.
Initiatives undertaken in this regard :
1. Minimum Support Price :
- Government has 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.
2. Increase in credit for agriculture :
- 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.
3. Operation Greens
- ‘Operation Greens’ was launched to address price volatility of perishable commodities like potatoes, tomatoes and onions, at an outlay of Rs. 500 crore.
- ‘Operation Greens’, on the lines of ‘Operation Flood’, shall promote Farmer Producers Organizations (FPOs), agri-logistics, processing facilities and professional management in the sector.
4. Gramin Agricultural Markets (GrAMs) :
- Development and upgradation of existing 22,000 rural haats into Gramin Agricultural Markets (GrAMs).
- Rs 2000 crore Agri-Market Infrastructure Fund for developing and upgrading agricultural marketing infrastructure to be setup.
- These GrAMs would be electronically linked to e-NAM and exempted from regulations of APMCs.
- This would provide farmers facility to make direct sale to consumers and bulk purchasers.
5. Fisheries and Animal husbandry given a boost
- To help small and marginal farmers in fisheries and animal husbandry sector to meet their working capital needs, government extended the facility of Kisan Credit Cards (KCC) to the sector.
- This would give benefit of crop loan and interest subvention, so far available to agriculture sector only under KCC, for rearing of cattle, buffalo, goat, sheep poultry and fisheries.
- Setting up of a Fisheries and Aquaculture Infrastructure Development Fund (FAIDF) for fisheries sector and an Animal Husbandry Infrastructure Development Fund (AHIDF) for financing infrastructure requirement of animal husbandry sector. Total Corpus of these two new Funds would be Rs.10,000 crore.
6. National Bamboo Mission to be revamped
- Launch of the Rs.1290-crore Re-structured National Bamboo Mission, which is based on a cluster based approach to address the complete bamboo value chain and promote bamboo sector in a holistic manner.
- With a focus on linking bamboo growers with consumers; creation of facilities for collection, aggregation, processing, marketing, MSMEs, skill building and brand building, this announcement would contribute in generating additional income for farmers, employment opportunities for skilled and unskilled youth especially in rural areas.