Cold storage, fertiliser classification as agri-infrastructure welcomed

March 1st, 2011 - 7:50 pm ICT by IANS  

Pranab Mukherjee New Delhi, March 1 (IANS) Industry lobby Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) Tuesday welcomed the classification of cold chain (storage) and fertiliser industry as agriculture infrastructure in the federal budget 2011-12 presented by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee Monday.”These steps will not only help in reducing wastages and seamlessly integrating the supply chain but at the same time will attract large scale private investments,” said Rakesh Bharti Mittal, chairman, CII national council on agriculture.

According to CII, the steps, including the reduction in custom duties on agriculture machinery, would attract further investments from the private sector and would translate into enormous positive multiplier effects on the agriculture and food processing sectors.

In the budget for 2011-12, Mukherjee took significant steps towards shoring up the agriculture sector. This included an allocation of Rs.7,860 crore to the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) and other allocations for specific commodities like rice, pulses, coarse grains and vegetables.

Mukherjee also raised the credit flow to agriculture from Rs.3.75 lakh crore to Rs.4.75 lakh crore. NABARD’s capital base was also infused with Rs.10,000 crore; this will also add to the stepping up of lending in agriculture.

According to the Economic Survey 2010-11, the agriculture sector is expected to grow 5.4 percent in the financial year 2011-12.

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