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Budget 2018: What the agri sector wants from Jaitley

January 15, 2018 13:33 IST

Corporate farming norms to be made more acceptable and balanced for both farmers and corporates

Key challenges

Small landholding: Since the bulk of farmers have less than 2 hectares of land, there is a difficulty in getting the benefits of ‘economics of scale’.

Limited access to technology and extension: Farmers still do not have access to better technology.

Also, effective dissemination of information from lab to land remains a challenge.

Storage: We need to come a long way in terms of availability and access of agricultural storage facilities for farmers.

Price volatility: The agri sector faces the Cobweb phenomenon, so there always exists a need to ensure farmers get remunerative prices.

Market integration: Farmers need to be better connected to the end-consumer. The number of stakeholders across the value chain needs to be reduced.

Industry ask

  • Better environment for start-ups in food and agri business
  • Greater technological investments in the field of agriculture
  • Simplified leasing norms for setting up processing infrastructure
  • Corporate farming norms to be made more acceptable and balanced for both farmers and corporates; buying and selling outside APMCs
  • Increased involvement of private players for increasing storage infrastructure
  • eNam should be implemented seamlessly over all markets and commodities
  • Better mechanism for price stabilisation of agri commodities

PwC point of view

Ajay Kakra, director (Agri & Natural Resources), PwC India

  • Investment in irrigation, farmer producer organisation, insurance and market integration, besides other sector reforms, need to continue
  • Further investment interest from the private sector is needed in backward integration, processing infrastructure and technology initiative

Industry voice

Siraj Chaudhry, chairman, Cargill India

  • Significant focus is needed on agriculture, with a view to improving rural economy and livelihoods
  • Policies and allocations are needed to ensure good prices for farmers’ crops, food and nutritional security and minimum wastage
  • Risks will need to be reduced via better implementation and monitoring of risk-mitigating policies

Read all about Jaitley's final full Budget right here!

Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters