After the announcement made in August regarding the introduction of an agricultural boost policy, on December 6th an agriculture export policy was approved by the Cabinet.
The aim of implementing this policy is to double the farm exports by 2022 and reach up to $100 billion in the coming few years, which will be followed by a stable trade policy.
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This step towards establishing a stable trade policy will reduce the practice of export control. This will develop a free flow for the farm exporters without interference from the government, unless necessary. The government shall only interfere in case there is a need to keep the domestic prices under control. Moreover there shall be no restrictions on the export of organic products.
Commerce President Suresh Prabhu while addressing the media said that the export policy is formulated to remove all the prohibitions on the export of organic products. He further added that this step was taken to increase the export of agricultural products such as tea, coffee and rice resulting in the increase of the country’s share in world agricultural trade.
The National Agriculture Export Policy will specifically focus on the infrastructure development and make sure that the state governments play a vital role in boosting farm exports, said Prabhu.
A monitoring framework will also be set up at the Center to monitor the implementation of this newly formed policy, as approved by the cabinet. This supervising framework shall have several central ministries, state governments and agencies as representatives. As per an official statement “The government has formulated a policy that would increase the farmer’s income twice in amount by 2022. Exports of agricultural products shall play a key role in attaining this goal.”
It is estimated that this step would include the Indian peasants and agricultural products in the global value chains. This policy is based on a unique cluster approach in which several chosen districts will be set up as a ‘cluster’ to promote export by setting up a complete value chain for area specific farm products. This will be a reforming policy that shall add modern technology, standardization of products to the primitive approach. Also more focus will be laid on the research and developmental activities, implementing proper regulations and hence developing a more transparent and beneficial system for the local farmers. As per an estimation the execution of this policy will result in an implication of around 1,400 Crore.
But on the other side of the coin these export curbs are bound to anger the largest voting blocs i.e. the farmers. The infuriated farmers have recently staged demonstrations in the capital and even in Mumbai. They are demanding for improved prices for their crops. This shall also impact the votes in the upcoming elections for BJP.
New Delhi`s indecisive policies on agricultural trade have also hampered India`s role as a strong player in the international market.
According to the Federation of Indian Export Organizations, a "switch on, switch off" policy has always prevented India from establishing itself as a dependable supplier of farm supplies, even in superfluous years.