Money & Banking

Nabard announces ₹5,000-crore concessional refinance facility

Mumbai | Updated on July 13, 2020 Published on July 13, 2020

The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (Nabard), on Monday, announced a concessional refinance facility to the tune of ₹5,000 crore for banks and financial institutions for on-lending to beneficiaries in its 2,150 watershed development projects.

The rural development financial institutions also announced earmarking of ₹5,000 crore during FY21 for turning Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (PACS) into multi-service centres (one-stop shops for meeting the varied needs of the farmers).

Nabard, in a statement, said its watershed development projects cover 23.04 lakh hectares of rain-fed area watershed and tribal development project areas.

“The concessional line of assistance will be available for three years from FY21 to FY23.

“The scheme will help the reverse migrants, who have returned to their villages from urban areas following the Covid-19 crisis, take up new occupations,” it added.

Grant-based scheme

Nabard has launched a ₹5,000-crore grant-based scheme for computerisation of Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (PACS) to enable these ground-level entities provide seamless credit services to their farmer members.

Under this initiative, assistance will be extended to each State, which will have to contribute a matching amount, to kick-start the process of computerization of PACS. These societies are the building blocks of India’s cooperative banking structure.

As many as 5,000 PACS will be upgraded this year followed by 15,000 PACS each in FY22 and FY23.

GR Chintala, Chairman, Nabard, said the aforementioned measures are aimed at building a more resilient rural India amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

He emphasised: “PACS can support farmers in post-harvest and marketing activities in addition to playing a key role in physical and financial supply chain of commodities by acting as spokes to the upcoming Gramin Agriculture Markets (GrAMs).

“Moreover, the recent reforms in APMC (Agricultural Produce Market Committee) Act, Essential Commodities Act, Contract Farming Act also favour such a transformation of PACS.”

Chintala observed that these upgraded PACS can be vehicles for creating investment opportunities for rural youth in agriculture, including those impacted by reverse migration in the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

Follow us on Telegram, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Linkedin. You can also download our Android App or IOS App.

Published on July 13, 2020
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor