FM moots incentives for boosting production of pulses


"I have suggested to the experts in consultation with the Agriculture Minister that whether you can come out with another package which can induce the farmers to go for larger production of the pulses," he said in Lok Sabha while replying to a supplementary demand.

The Finance Minister said that the Centre had launched programmes in late 1980 and early 1990 to boost pulses output, "but farmers did not buy it".
According to estimates, pulses production has remained stagnant at around 13-15 MT during the last decade, while demand is pegged at 17-18 MT. The gap is met through imports.

The minister said a breakthrough was required in pulses production, through better varieties of seeds and technology. "There is a net shortage of 4 MT and except Myanmar, Argentina and Turkey, no country has exportable surplus," he said.
Mukherjee noted that the government has scrapped the import duty on pulses, but private traders are not importing due to high international prices.

"We have put it (pulses import) under OGL (open General Licence). (There is) zero duty for imports, but still the private traders are not importing because they are making their own calculation that if they import, their landed cost would be more than the prevailing market prices," he said.

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