India Current Affairs 2017

Economic Survey 2016-17 Volume II: Agriculture and Food Management Reforms Measures

The Economic Survey 2016-17 Volume II released recently has taken into consideration various challenges faced by the Agriculture sector in India. It has suggested multi-dimensional Agricultural and Food Management Reforms Measures.

Challenges

Small Operational Land Holdings: The average farm size in India is small and declining since 1970-71. It is a major limitation to reap the benefits of economies of scale in agriculture operations.

Credit: The predominance of informal sources of credit for farmers is a concern. Moreover, there is regional disparity in the distribution of agricultural credit.

Post- harvest losses: The horticulture sector in India faces problems like post-harvest losses, availability of quality planting material and lack of market access for horticultural produce of small farmers. 

Reforms suggested

Price risks in agriculture and allied sectors: Strengthening and building marketing infrastructure along the entire value chain.

Production risks: The share of irrigated area should be expanded by increasing the coverage of water saving irrigation systems like micro irrigation systems.

Increase productivity of crops: Standards should be set and enforced for better quality, pest and disease resistant seeds.

Trade and domestic policy changes: It should be announced well before sowing and should stay till arrivals and procurement is over.

Enhance women’s involvement in the dairy projects: Funds should be earmarked through appropriate mechanisms.

Formal and institutional credit: It should be provided in timely and affordable manner to the small and marginal farmers is the key to inclusive growth. Regime based on timely interventions needs to be adopted.

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Odisha government and Facebook launches ‘SheMeansBusiness’ programme

Odisha government and social networking giant Facebook has launched ‘SheMeansBusiness’ programme to train women entrepreneurs in the state.

It was launched in partnership between Odisha’s MSME (micro, small and medium enterprises) department and Project Mission Shakti.

Key Facts

Under this initiative, 25, 000 women entrepreneurs and self-help group (SHG) members from the state will be given training on digital marketing skills within by the end of 2018. Facebook will monitor the growth of the MSMEs in Odisha after imparting training to them in next one year.

 It will also prepare a data base of the MSMEs through registrations in which they will take the email ids and mobile numbers of entrepreneurs in all the workshops.

SheMeansBusiness programme

The programme has been launched in 16 countries around the world including India. It is designed to reach out to aspiring and established women entrepreneurs to help them build and grow their business online.

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