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Fertiliser major IFFCO has entered into joint venture with Congelados De Navarra to set up food processing plant at Ludhiana in Punjab with an investment of Rs 325 crore. With this joint venture, co-operative IFFCO for first time will foray into food processing sector. Congelados De Navarra company based in Spain is pioneer in quick frozen (IQF) technology. It is into processing of vegetables, fruits, herbs and ready-made pre-cooked dishes.
In the JV, IFFCO will have 30% stake while Congelados De Navarra will have the remaining 70% stake. This company will invest about Rs 325 crore to set up greenfield food processing unit. The proposed plant will source produce like potatoes, peas and cauliflower from farmers and then process them for sale in domestic and exports market.
IFFCO’s foray into food processing business will benefit of farmers. It will also contribute in the government’s goal to double farmers income by 2022, he added. This new facility food processing facility will also generate 400 direct and 5,000 indirect local jobs in Punjab.
Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative Limited (IFFCO)
IFFCO is large scale fertiliser cooperative federation in India which is registered as Multistate Cooperative Society. It is one of India’s biggest cooperative society which is wholly owned by Indian Cooperatives. It was founded in 1967 with just 57 cooperatives and at present it has amalgamation of over 36,000 Indian Cooperatives with diversified business interests ranging from General Insurance to Rural Telecom apart from its core business of manufacturing and selling fertilisers. It is headquartered in New Delhi.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) in its report has projected India’s GDP growth 7.3% in the 2018-19 fiscal and 7.5% in 2019-2020 on strengthening of investment and robust private consumption. India’s near-term macroeconomic outlook for India is broadly favourable.
Key Highlights of IMF Report
Headline inflation: It is projected to rise to 5.2% in fiscal year 2018/19, as demand conditions tighten, along with recent depreciation of rupee and higher oil prices, housing rent allowances and agricultural minimum support prices. But it has averaged 3.6% in fiscal year 2017/18 which 17-year low, reflecting low food prices on return to normal monsoon rainfall, agriculture sector reforms, subdued domestic demand and currency appreciation.
Current account deficit (CAD): It is projected to widen further to 2.6% of GDP on rising oil prices and strong demand for imports. CAD will be offset by slight increase in remittances
Financial sector reforms: They have been undertaken to address twin balance sheet problems, as well as to revive bank credit and enhance efficiency of credit provision by accelerating cleanup of bank and corporate balance sheets. India’s stability-oriented macro-economic policies and progress on structural reforms are continuing to bear fruit.
Way Forward: Continued fiscal consolidation is needed for India to lower elevated public debt levels, supported by simplifying and streamlining GST structure. Further, while important steps have been taken to improve recognition of Non-Performing Assets (NPAs) and recapitalise Public Sector Banks (PSBs), more needs to be done. Persistently-high household inflation expectations and large general government fiscal deficits and debt are still key macroeconomic challenges.
PSB Reforms: Large fraud in PSBs highlights financial sector weaknesses and underscores need for government to take further steps to improve PSBs’ governance and operations, including by considering more aggressive disinvestment.
Economic risks: Domestic economic risks are tilted to downside and external side risks include further increase in international oil prices, tighter global financial conditions, retreat from cross-border integration including spillover risks from global trade conflict and rising regional geopolitical tensions. Domestic risks pertain to tax revenue shortfalls related to continued GST implementation issues and delays in addressing twin balance sheet problems and other structural reforms.