Fertilizer Advisory Forum to hold first meet here tomorrow
New Delhi, Mar 6 (UNI) The first day-long meeting of the Fertilizer Advisory Forum will be held here tomorrow to discuss the availability of fertilizers to the farmers at the minimum retail price indicated by the Centre and the role of the State Governments in it.
The meeting will be chaired by the Minister of Chemicals&Fertilizers and Steel Ram Vilas Paswan.
The Minister of State for Chemicals&Fertilizers B K Handique, the Chairmen of IFFCO and KRIBHCO and Secretaries of the Department of Agriculture and Co-operation and Department of Fertilizers will also address the gathering.
The event is a prelude to the Krishi Expo 2006 being organized by the Department of Agriculture and Co-operation here from March 8 to 12, 2006.
The main focus will remain on the role of the Central and State Governments in promoting a balanced use of fertilizer depending upon the soil requirements and cropping patterns in different regions of the country.
Agriculture plays a major role in the growth of the Indian economy. Successive five-year plans have stressed on self-sufficiency and self-reliance in foodgrains.
Concerted efforts by the Centre and the State Governments in this direction ushered in the Green Revolution in the country in the 1960s leading to a substantial increase in agricultural production and productivity. India is now self-reliant in foodgrain production.
The application and availability of chemical fertilizers at subsidised rates had a vital role in increasing the food production in juxtaposition to factors like application of high yielding varieties of seeds, assured irrigation and land reforms.
Urea is sold at a statutorily notified uniform price. Similarly DAP, NPK, MOP and SSP are sold at the maximum retail prices (MRP) indicated by the Central and State Governments.
The cost of production of these fertilizers is generally higher than the sale prices or MRP. The difference between the cost of production and the selling price or MRP is compensated to the manufacturers or importers by the Government of India as subsidy or concession.
The Department of Fertilizers had constituted the Fertilizer Advisory Forum on June 28, 2004 to provide a platform to all stakeholders to discuss common issues like promotion of balanced application of fertilizer nutrients and fertilizer distribution to realize optimal benefits to the farmers across the country.
This Forum has representatives from the States Governments, fertilizer industry, distributors, farmers and ministries/departments of Government of India dealing with the subject.
The Forum aims at encouraging a meaningful dialogue amongst the stakeholders on different issues relating to the fertilizer sector to enable the Department of Fertilizers in formulating farmer-friendly policies.
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