Govt approves enhancing buffer stock of pulses up to 20 lakh tonnes
The Dollar Business Bureau
The government has approved the recommendations of the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) to enhance the buffer stock for pulses to 20 lakh tonnes. Earlier on Monday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi chaired the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs and gave his nod to the proposal, in which the buffer stock for pulses will be created through domestic procurement and inbound shipments of 10 lakh tonnes each.
The government will decide on the specific variety of pulses and their quantities for the buffer stock, while their procurement will be determined on the basis of price and availability position of pulses in both domestic and global markets.
“Releases from the stock and procurement in the subsequent year would be based on the prevailing pulse scenario as well as buffer stock position. Requisite funds for this operation would be provided to the 'Price Stabilisation Fund' Scheme of the Department,” the government said in a statement.
The central agencies such as FCI, NAFED, SFAC or any other agency decided by PSFMC will undertake domestic procurement operations based on the prevailing market prices if it is above Minimum Support Prices (MSP) or at MSP.
“In addition, State Governments may also be authorized, wherever possible, to undertake the procurement in a manner similar to a decentralized procurement of foodgrains,” it said.
“Import of pulses under PSF to meet the buffer stock requirements would be undertaken through G2G contract and/or spot purchase from the global market through designated Public Sector Enterprise of Department of Commerce or any other agency designated by PSFMC,” the statement said.
The procured pulses will later be allocated to the States/Union Territories and Central Agencies through a strategic open market sale. The government may also engage professional pulses buffer management entity to manage the buffer. These steps will enable the government to ensure a stable price regime for pulses while encouraging domestic farmers to increase the production of commodities.