Rs. 57.3 billion allocated for agro development, promotion

Kathmandu, May. 29: The government has allocated Rs. 57.29 billion for the development and promotion of agriculture and livestock for the next fiscal year 2024/25.

Presenting the budget for the fiscal year 2024/25 at the joint session of the federal parliament on Tuesday Finance Minister Barsaman Pun said that the government had allocated budget with due priority in the agriculture sector for increasing production and productivity of agriculture.

Finance Minister Pun has announced to observe Agriculture Decade from 2081 to 2091 to increase investment in agriculture. 

He said that a decade would be announced to increase investment in agriculture through government cooperatives and private partnerships.

“Arrangements will be made to provide government land for collective farming. Legal provision will be made for the commercial cultivation of marijuana for medicinal purposes,” he said.

“Contract farming will be promoted with the participation of the government, farmers and businessmen to ensure fair prices and markets for agricultural produce. 

If the firm that collects, processes and exports agricultural produce ensures that local farmers will purchase agricultural products by providing fertilisers, seeds and other materials needed, interest subsidies on fertilizers, seeds, agricultural extension services and loans will be provided based on the amount produced,” he said.

There is a mention in the budget that interest subsidy, technical assistance and tax exemption on machinery import will be provided to individuals, firms and cooperatives who are professionally engaged in collective farming, animal husbandry and herb cultivation by consolidating and consolidating more than 50 ropanies of land in the mountains and hills and 10 bighas in the Tarai.

Pun said that market of the produce will be ensured by providing subsidies for advanced seeds, irrigation to promote the production of agricultural crops such as rice, sugarcane, corn, milk, fish, meat, coffee, tea, ginger, turmeric, hot pepper, onion and potatoes.

According to him, around Rs. 2.98 billion has been allocated to the Prime Minister’s Agriculture Modernisation Project for the next fiscal year.

The government has also allocated Rs. 1.44 billion for the promotion of fruit cultivation in the country.

Pun said that a business firm of musk deer breeding will be established in Myagdi, Mustang and Manang and Gorkha.

Arrangements will also be made to get loans on the mortgage of agricultural produce, he said, and added that the cold storage will be constructed at international and domestic airports.

“For the commercialisation of agriculture, I have made arrangements to provide start-up capital to 300 production organisations centered on the highway and to ensure the market for the produced goods. I have allocated Rs. 1.12 billion.” 

The government has allocated budget of Rs. 27.95 billion for subsidy to ensure timely supply of fertilisers to farmers. Meanwhile, the government has allocated budget of Rs. 36.81 billion for the development of hydropower, water resources irrigation sector for the next fiscal year. 

Around Rs. 820 million have been allocated for the Integrated Karnali Irrigation Development Programme to be operated in all 10 districts of Karnali Province, according to the budget.

The government has allocated budget of Rs. 3.12 billion for Sunkoshi Marin Diversion and Rs. 2.87 billion for the construction of a branch canal under the Lamki Main Cannel.

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