NAFED Current Affairs

CCEA doubles Bank guarantee limit for pulses & oilseeds for NAFED

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved proposal to double guarantee to Rs. 19,000 crore from earlier Rs 9,500 crore to National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED) for obtaining credit from banks for procurement of pulses and oilseeds at the support price. The regularization and extension is for undertaking procurement operation of pulses and oilseeds under Price Support Scheme (PSS).

The CCEA also approved Government Guarantee up to Rs. 45 crore to the Small Farmers Agri-Business Consortium (SFAC) for meeting its existing liability and settlement of extant claims. The guarantee will be provided for period of 5 years, till 2021-22 and with waiver of 1% of government guarantee fee.

Background

As the market price of almost all pulses and oilseeds are ruling below Minimum Support Price (MSP) as notified by Government, provision of Government Guarantee will help in protecting farmers producing these commodities from making distress sales during peak arrival period. It will also provide remunerative prices to encourage higher investment and production. It will also provide to safeguard interest of consumer by making available supplies at reasonable price with low cost of intermediation.

National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd (NAFED)

NAFED is apex organization of marketing cooperatives for agricultural produce in India. Its headquarters is located in New Delhi. It was founded in October 1958 to promote trade of agricultural produce and forest resources across the nation. It functions under Ministry of Agriculture.

NAFED is now one of the largest procurement as well as marketing agencies for agricultural products in India.  In 2008, it had established, National Spot Exchange, a Commodities exchange as a joint venture of Financial Technologies (India) Ltd. (FTIL).

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CCEA approves measures to increase Pulses’ production

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved creation of buffer stock of pulses to deal with wide fluctuation in prices of pulses and check food inflation.

The buffer stock will be created by the procurement and would be valid for fiscal year 2015-16.

As per decision

  • The buffer stock will consist about 50000 tonnes of pulses from the kharif crop 2015-16 and one lakh tonnes from the rabi crop of 2015-16.
  • The Procurement will be done at market prices through above Minimum Support Price (MSP) out of the Price Stabilisation Fund.
  • If the prices fall below MSP, the procurement will be made at MSP under Price Support Scheme of Department of Agriculture (DoA).
  • Procuring agencies would be Food Corporation of India (FCI), National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd. (NAFED) and Small Farmers’ Agribusiness Consortium (SFAC).

The CCEA also decided to import pulses through Union Ministry of Commerce depending on the requirement.

Comment

  • Though being the highest producer of pulses in the world, India faces shortage as its domestic demand outstrips domestic production.
  • It leads to fluctuation in prices and food inflation. As a short term measure the shortfall of pulses is usually met from imports.
  • However, there is need for a long-term solution to meet its demand and increase pulses production in the country.
  • Presently, Union government promotes cultivation of pulses mainly through National Food Security Mission (NFSM) which covers 622 districts in 27 states.
  • Around 50 per cent of allocation of NFSM is made for pulses. Under it, financial assistance is given for distribution of quality seeds of new varieties, integrated pest management, water saving devices, demonstration of improved technology and capacity building of farmers.

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