The Union Minister of Agriculture and Family Welfare, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar launched the Project Management Unit (PMU) on Public-Private Partnership (PPP) in Agriculture in New Delhi today. Speaking on the occasion, Shri Tomar emphasized the need to strengthen the Agriculture sector as it will help in strengthening other sectors as well. He further stated that the PPP model can be the ideal model for growth in Agriculture sector and PPP projects must focus on benefitting the farmers through enhancement of their income.
Shri Tomar said that the empowerment of Agriculture sector is very important for the country and society. “If the Government alone continues to do all the work, this is not an ideal situation; better things can be done only with public participation. For the progress of any sector, the Government can deliver better with the cooperation of all,” he said.
Shri Tomar said that the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, during his tenure of last eight years, has simplified the system by scrapping more than 1,500 redundant laws, thereby making life easy for the common man. “On the occasion of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav and inspired by PM Modi’s ideals, we should think what more can organizations like the FICCI do in the interest of the country? If the thinking and attitude will change, then the change will come about. Everyone’s aim is right, but it is necessary for such ideas to be implemented. PPP is the ideal model which benefits everyone, there is progress in the concerned sector and overall development of the country takes place,” he said.
Shri Tomar said that the Trade & Industry sector is strong and organized, they have all the means, they can promote the Agriculture sector. On its part, the Government is undertaking continuous steps to strengthen the Agriculture sector through various schemes like the Agriculture Infrastructure Fund worth Rs. One Lakh Crore, setting up of 10,000 Farmers Producers Organizations (FPO) and Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima scheme. Government is making relentless efforts to create farmers organizations, empower them, provide new techniques, promote remunerative crops and improve the quality of the produce at par with the global standards. “Farmers are encouraged by the Government initiatives and the results are now evident. It is a matter of satisfaction that PM Modi’s commitment to double the income of the farmers has reached out to them and organizations like the FICCI are working hard towards achieving this goal,” he said.
Shri Tomar expressed the hope that everyone will make efforts to achieve growth in the Agriculture sector and make it more beneficial to the farmers. “If Agriculture is strong, then the country can withstand even the adverse circumstances,” he said.
Speaking on the occasion, Secretary (A&FW) Shri Manoj Ahuja stated that the Government should play a catalytic role in facilitating investments in Agriculture sector. Private sector and NGOs should come together and partner with Govt. on projects in Agriculture which will have a multiplier effect.
Shri Shubrakant Panda, Senior Vice President, FICCI expressed confidence that the PMU initiative for PPP in Agriculture launched today will accelerate large scale PPP projects in Agriculture by leveraging the private sector investments and bring convergence of Government schemes and subsidies.
Additional Secretary (A&FW) Shri Abhilaksh Likhi and other senior officers of DA&FW and FICCI were present on the occasion. Representatives from States and Industry joined online.
Agriculture investments and increasing gross capital formation in agriculture are key to modernizing the Agriculture sector. Combining public investments, in the form of various Central Government and State Government initiatives in agriculture along with the Private sector investment, can be a force multiplier for the agriculture sector. The Government is keen to incentivize PPP initiatives in the Agriculture sector to improve yields, reduce losses and enhance farmer incomes. PPP initiatives will crowd in private capital in agriculture, leverage public investment and align the Central and State Governments, the Private sector, and farmers in a shared vision of dynamic and value-added growth in the sector. PPP initiatives will also lead to the convergence of various schemes to benefit farmers and improve their impact.
The primary objective of this PPP initiative is to enhance the income of small farmers by creating additional value, – from provisioning of quality inputs, technology extension to market linkages, and value addition. PPP initiatives are also expected to lead to modernizing agriculture practices, promoting research in climate resilient crops, developing agriculture and rural infrastructure, and increasing agricultural exports. A particular objective is to assist the States to unlock the full potential of their respective agro-climatic regions, and wide variety of agri-produce and help producers to integrate better with domestic and export markets.
Against this backdrop, the Department of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare and FICCI have announced this joint initiative to develop PPP initiatives in Agriculture.