Agri Business

Growers renew demand for rubber support price

V Sajeev Kumar Kochi | Updated on July 06, 2018 Published on July 06, 2018

 

After the Government announced a hefty increase in MSP for kharif crops, rubber growers in Kerala have renewed their demand for a support price for natural rubber which has hit a low.

The authorities have been claiming that a rubber policy is on the anvil to benefit growers.

But nothing has happened yet, P C Cyriac, President of Indian Farmers Movement (Infam) told BusinessLine.

The government has completely neglected the rubber sector without fixing a support price. “We have been asking for a 50 per cent safeguard duty for four years to control imports. This will benefit local production that was dropped to 6 lakh tonnes (lt) from 9.50 lt. The domestic production can be regained only by arresting the flow of imports”, he said.

At the same time, he pointed out that anti dumping duty has been levied ontyre to protect the domestic industry from tyre imports and helped synthetic rubber manufacturers by imposing safeguard duty.

Today rubber prices are hovering in the range of ₹120-125 a kg and it has come to a situation where farmers are not able to tap trees.

If only domestic prices increase, he said, the trees will get tapped and the production of natural rubber increase.

C Vinayaraghavan, former Chairman of Association of Planters of Kerala emphasised the need to support small rubber growers.

At a time when tyre industries are on an expansion mode there is a need to increase production to meet the demand.

The announcement of a support price is important to keep the interest of growers in rubber cultivation otherwise they may shift to some other crops, he said.

The fast pace of highway development in the country is likely to push up vehicle demand, which will in turn help rubber production to meet tyre industries production demand, he added.

Published on July 06, 2018
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