CCEA approves Rs 310 cr Scheme for coffee development

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New Delhi, Mar 13 (UNI) The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) today gave its approval for Lmplementation of the scheme of Development Support for coffee by the Coffee Board during the XIth Plan with an outlay of Rs 310 crore, an official spokesperson said.

The scheme will be in the following manner: (i) Payment of replanting subsidy at 25 per cent, 30 per cent and 40 per cent to the coffee growers having holdings of more than 10 hectares, two to 10 hectares, and up to two hectares, respectively, for an outlay of Rs 100 crore subject to the condition that subsidy would be available only to individual growers and not to the cooperative corporate entities engaged in plantation.

(ii) Payment of subsidy of 20 per cent towards quality upgradation, and pollution abatement and 25 per cent towards water augmentation, restricted to individual growers having holding size of 20 hectares, for an outlay of Rs 40 crore.

(iii) To extend financial incentives in North East Region for planting and aftercare and also supply of coffee seedlings/shade saplings for an outlay of Rs 20 crore.

(iv) Expansion of the area under coffee in Non-Traditional Areas and tribal sector for an outlay of Rs 45 crore.

(iv) Implementation of programmes of capacity building for all stakeholders in coffee sector for an outlay of Rs 10 crore.

(v) Implementation of welfare support to labours and tiny growers for an outlay of Rs 5 crore.

(vii) Providing interest subsidy at the uniform rate not exceeding 5 per cent to growers on working capital loans for an outlay of Rs 90 crore, subject to the following conditions: (a) The interest subsidy will be limited to a ceiling of Rs 50,000 per Arabica coffee grower and Rs 40,000 per Robusta coffee grower.

(b) The interest rate, after allowing interest subsidy should not be lower than seven per cent.

(viii) Comprehensive evaluation of the scheme will be done by an independent agency after two years with regard to the parameters of the scheme and scales of subsidy.

The Scheme of Development Support is aimed to provide support to coffee growers to improve farm productivity by way of replanting senile coffee blocks; to support water augmentation, quality improvement of the product to augment grower realisation, and pollution abatement.

It will also look to support coffee development in North-East Region and in Non-Traditional Areas like Andhra Pradesh and Orissa; to build capacity among various stakeholders in the Indian coffee sector; to extend welfare support to coffee sector workers as well as tiny coffee growers.

The Scheme will also provide interest subsidy to growers on working capital loans to provide some relief from fast increasing production costs.

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