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Government Report Says Agriculture Needed Additional Investment

In latest report by government committee said, to enable doubling of farmers' real income by 2022-23, an additional investment of Rs 6,399 billion is required from both public and private sectors.

At present, public investment is below national average in states like Assam, Kerala, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan, Punjab and Odisha.

In first four volumes of the report released for public comment, these are some of the suggestions made by the Committee on Doubling Farmers' Income headed by National Rainfed Area Authority CEO Ashok Dalwai. The remaining eight volumes are yet to be released.

It said that, for a targeted 10.41 per cent annual increase in farmers' income, the required rate of increase in investment on private account is estimated at 7.86 per cent per annum. The estimated increase in weighted public investment is pegged at 14.17 per cent per year.

To boost farmers' real income, the committee said there is need for an additional Rs 617 billion of private investment by 2022-23 at 2004-05 prices and Rs 1,318.4 billion at 2011-12 prices.

The committee strongly recommended the stepping up of institutional credit on a large scale, as only 50 to 60 per cent of the investment requirements of farmers are being fulfilled through institutional loans.

It has also worked out total public investment 'for' agriculture at Rs 2,843 billion at 2004-05 prices and Rs 5,080.8 billion at 2011-12 prices for all the major states.

Investment in agricultural infrastructure needs to be significantly stepped up to boost productivity growth, since public investment in agriculture in the less developed states has been historically low.


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