Stock of fertilisers for kharif season exceeds demand, says govt
New Delhi, May 2 (IANS) Stating that there is more stock for supply of fertilisers for this kharif season than the demand this year, the Centre on Monday asked the states to not create either a panic situation or spread misinformation related to fertilisers.
"With the government's proactive steps in pre-positioning urea, DAP and NPK and other fertilisers supply, currently, we have more stock for supply of fertilisers for this kharif season than the demand," Union Chemicals and Fertilisers Minister, Mansukh Mandaviya said.
"Despite the pandemic and rise in prices of raw materials at international level, we have managed to keep the fertilisers' price at a very minimum rate by increasing subsidies, so that our farmers don't suffer. This year, around Rs 2.5 lakh crore subsidy will be given to farmers."
While jointly reviewing the fertiliser situation with Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Tomar during a meeting with the Agriculture Ministers of states/UTs, Mandaviya also advised the states to keep providing farmers with adequate and accurate information regarding availability and to not create either a panic situation or misinformation related to fertiliser stocks.
Earlier, the Union Cabinet had approved the proposal of the Department of Fertilisers for Nutrient Based Subsidy (NBS) rates for phosphatic and potassic (P&K) fertilisers for Kharif Season 2022 (from April 1, 2022 to September 30, 2022) worth Rs 60,939.23 crore, including support for indigenous fertiliser (SSP) through freight subsidy and additional support for indigenous manufacturing and imports of DAP.
The increase in the international prices of di-ammonium phosphate (DAP) and its raw materials has been primarily absorbed by the Centre, which has decided to provide a subsidy of Rs 2,501 per bag on DAP instead of the existing subsidy of Rs 1,650 per bag which is a 50 per cent increase over the last year's subsidy rates.
The increase in the prices of DAP and its raw material is in the range of approximately 80 per cent. "It will help farmers to receive notified P&K fertilisers on subsidised, affordable and reasonable rates and support the agriculture sector," the Minister added.
Stressing on the need to tackle the issues of malpractices like hoarding, black-marketing or diversion of fertilizers, he said that the government will take strict action in case of such scenarios.
Observing that fertiliser is an important component of agriculture production and the government's objective is to reduce import dependency on various fertilisers, Tomar said: "We are committed to ensuring availability of affordable fertilisers to our farmers. In order to reduce the agricultural import dependence, we should work together to become AtmaNirbhar in the agriculture sector too."