Agriculture Minister calls upon NCDC to launch a concerted effort to augment storage capacity
In his presidential address at the 69th meeting of General Council of the NCDC here today, Shri Pawar said that the benefits of storage facility in the cooperative sector are well known, in terms of improving the rural economy and strengthening livelihoods, while reducing wastage and enhancing food availability. Shri Pawar assured full support of the Government in this endeavour.
The Minister asked the NCDC to enhance its efficiency and review its business processes to bring them in line with modern day realities. Shri Pawar also asked the NCDC to look at new ways of supporting cooperatives and new instruments to provide an impetus for growth of the sector. While it is important for NCDC to be prudent in selecting its beneficiaries and their projects, it should make special efforts to guide and assist those cooperatives that may be in incipient stages of sickness and in need of external support, the Minister stressed. He said, a large number of cooperatives are either sick or plagued with incipient sickness due to reasons some of which are beyond their control. Government is well seized of the matter and is considering various remedies.
Shri Pawar pointed out that cooperatives are, of late, finding it difficult to deliver optimal results due to their inherent structural and locational constraints coupled with inertia towards changes in the economy. He said, the global economy, of which, India is now an integral part, is passing through transformation with liberalization of economic policies, reduction of state intervention, stiff competition, easy access to monetary capital, etc. As liberalization has opened up new opportunities for economic growth for private sector, the cooperatives are finding themselves handicapped in coping with the challenges posed by new economic environment. Cooperatives need to adapt to these changes and evolve innovative strategies and business practices to enable them to play their role effectively in the development of the economy.
Referring to RBI’s decision not to treat the loans being provided by NCDC to the cooperative sector for agriculture and allied activities as priority sector lending beyond 31st March, 2010, the Minister informed that the Government is seized of the problem and various alternatives are under consideration to ensure credit to the cooperatives at competitive rates.
The main agenda of today’s meeting was to discuss the programme and activities of NCDC for the year 2010-11 involving a financial outlay of Rs.3600 crore. NCDC had achieved its targets during the last fiscal and earned a net profit of Rs.132 crore. Net NPAs were reduced to 0.006% of the outstanding loans and its recovery rate was 99.7%.
[caption id="attachment_10264" align="alignnone" width="500" caption="The Union Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Agriculture, Shri Sharad Pawar presided over the 69th Meeting of NCDC General Council, in New Delhi ,INVC"][/caption]