Latha Venkatraman

Mumbai Feb. 28 The Union Budget 2006/2007 proposals bring cheer to one company - Jain Irrigation Systems Ltd. Every business that the company is involved in has got some sops in the Finance Bill.

The company is present in drip irrigation, food processing, pipes and plastics. The fact that the company's businesses lie in the core of the rural economy augurs well for its topline and bottomline.

"Our presence is interlinked to where much of India lies," says Mr Anil Jain, Managing Director, Jain Irrigation Systems.

The target of 6,00,000 hectares of irrigation potential is expected to be created this year, the budget speech said.

"Of the 10 million hectares that would be brought under irrigation, a sizeable portion would be for drip irrigation," Mr Jain said.

The increase in farm credit as proposed in the Bill would mean more purchasing power in the hands of the farmer, Jain Irrigation Systems' the consumer for JISL. The Bill proposes to ask banks to increase credit to Rs 1,75,000 crore in 2006/2007 from Rs 1,41,500 crore set for the current year. The offer of credit at a lower interest rate would mean more farmers would be able to avail themselves of the funds.

Major thrust to the food processing sector and tariff reduction on plastics are measures that have a direct bearing on Jain Irrigation Systems' JISL's topline and bottomline.

"The direction of the Budget is perfect for the rural sector," Mr Jain said.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated March 1, 2006)
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