Oilseeds Current Affairs
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved for removal of prohibition on export of all varieties of edible oils except mustard oil. The proposal was forwarded by Ministry of Commerce & Industry. The CCEA has also approved empowering Committee, chaired by Secretary, Department of Food & Public Distribution to review the export and import policy on all varieties of edible oils.
The empowering committee will consider measures such as quantitative restrictions, prior registration, imposition of Minimum Export Price (MEP) and changes in import duties depending on domestic production and demand, domestic and international prices and international trade volumes. The CCEA has discontinued Inter-Ministerial Committee headed by Commerce Secretary, mandated to review export of edible oils in consumer packs and calibrate MEP from time to time.
Removing of restrictions on export of all edible oils will provide additional marketing avenues for edible oils and oilseeds. It will benefit the farmers by way of better realisation for oilseeds. It will also result in utilization of idle capacity in India’s edible oils industry. It is considered as a step towards Ease of Doing Business by removing confusion arising out of prohibition on export of edible oils and plethora of exemptions.
The production of oilseeds in 2016-17 has seen quantum jump in comparison to past two years. It is expected that production of oilseeds in 2017-18 is going to sustain at same levels. At present, only certain edible oils are allowed be exported in bulk and other oils only in consumer packs with MEP. In order to support growing production of oilseeds and to explore additional avenues for marketing of edible oils, allowing bulk export of all edible oils with the exception of mustard oil which is an item of mass consumption in India was seen required step.
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.
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).