Phosphatic and Potassic Fertilizers Current Affairs - 2020

Union Cabinet approves Nutrient Based Subsidy

On April 22, 2020, the Union Cabinet approved to fix Nutrient Based Subsidies for Phosphatic Potassic fertilizers.


The cabinet also approved the use of complex fertilizer namely Ammonium Phosphate. The expenditure to be spent on the subsidy of the fertilizer is expected to be Rs 22,186 crores.

The nitrogenous fertilizers are to be provided at the rate of Rs 18.78 per kg, Phosporous at Rs 14.88 per kg, Potash at Rs 10.11 per kg and Sulphur at Rs 2.37 per kg.


The Government of India has been providing potassium and phosphorous fertilizers to farmers in subsidy rates. These subsidies are governed by the NBS scheme that was launched in 2010.

Nutrient Based Subsidy Scheme

Under the scheme, the fertilizers except urea are to be provided to the farmers at subsidized rates. The scheme focuses on secondary nutrients such as N,P,K and S and also micro nutrients.

CCEA approves Nutrient Based Subsidy rates for P&K fertilizers

Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) chaired by Prime Minister has approved proposal for fixation of Nutrient Based Subsidy Rates for Phosphatic and Potassic (P&K) Fertilizers for the year 2019-20. This proposal was forwarded by Department of Fertilizers.

Nutrient Based Subsidy Rates 2019-20

Benefits: This will enable manufacturers and importers to formalize supply contracts for fertilizers and fertilizer inputs. It will make fertilizers available to farmers in year 2019-20.

Expenditure: The expected expenditure (during 2019-20 period) on releasing subsidy on P&K Fertilizers will be Rs. 22875.50crore.

Background: Union Government makes available Urea and 21 grades of P&K fertilizers to farmers at subsidized prices through fertilizer manufacturers/importers. This subsidy on P&K fertilizers is governed by Nutrient Based Subsidy (NBS) Scheme.

About Nutrient Based Subsidy (NBS)

Under it fixed amount of subsidy is decided by Government on annual basis and is provided on each grade of subsidized P&K fertilizers, except for Urea, based on the nutrient content present in them.

It was launched 2010. It is being implemented by Department of Fertilizers, under Ministry of Fertilizers.

Objectives: (i) Ensure sufficient quantity of P&K is available at farmer’s disposal at statutory controlled prices. (ii) Ensure balanced use of fertilizers for improving agricultural productivity, promoting growth of indigenous fertilizers industry and also reducing burden of subsidy

Features: It is largely meant for secondary nutrients like N, P, S and K and micronutrients which are very important for crop growth and development. It is implemented with expectation that it will promote balanced fertilization of soil, which will lead to increased agricultural productivity and consequently better returns to the farmers.

Significance: In India, urea is the only controlled fertilizer and is sold at statutory notified uniform sale price. NBS allows manufacturers, marketers, and importers to fix Maximum Retail Price (MRP) of Phosphatic and Potassic (P&K) fertilizers at reasonable levels. This MRP is decided considering domestic and international prices of P&K fertilizers, inventory level in the country and the exchange rates.