Nirmala Sitharaman on Economic Package: FM announces setting up of Rs 1 lakh cr agri fund for farm-gate infrastructure

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday announced setting up of a Rs 1 lakh crore agri infrastructure fund for farm-gate infrastructure

FP Staff May 15, 2020 17:04:48 IST
Nirmala Sitharaman on Economic Package: FM announces setting up of Rs 1 lakh cr agri fund for farm-gate infrastructure

In a move to strenghten infrastructure in agriculture, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday announced setting up of a Rs 1 lakh crore agri infrastructure fund for farm-gate infrastructure.

This fund will be used for setting up cold chains and post-harvest management infrastructure, she said while announcing the third tranche of COVID-19 relief package.

She also announced a Rs 10,000 crore scheme for formalisation of micro food enterprises (MFE).

The scheme will be launched to help 2 lakh MFEs by adopting cluster-based approach such as mango in Uttar Pradesh, kesar in Jammu & Kashmir, bamboo shoots in North-East, chilli in Andhra Pradesh, tapioca in Tamil Nadu.

This fund would help in reaching untapped export markets in view of improved health consciousness.

Addressing the media, Sitharaman said that financing facility of Rs 1 lakh crore will be provided for funding in agriculture infrastructure projects at the farm-gate and aggregation points such as primary agricultural cooperative societies, farmer producer organisations and agriculture entrepreneurs, among others.

This will provide impetus for development for farm-gate/aggregation point affordable and financially viable post harvest management infrastructure, she said.

Observing the lack of adequate cold chain and post harvest management infrastructure in the vicinity of farm gate causes gaps in value chains, Sitharaman said that the fund will be created immediately.

The announcement is part of the third tranche of the Rs 20 lakh crore economic package announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday.

(with inputs from agencies)

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