– globalbihari bureau
New Delhi: In pursuance of recently announced Atma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyan stimulus package, the Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved setting up of Animal Husbandry Infrastructure Development Fund (AHIDF) amounting to Rs. 15000 crore.
Government had earlier approved the Dairy Infrastructure Development Fund (DIDF) worth Rs. 10,000 crores for incentivizing investment by cooperative sector for development of dairy infrastructure. However, the MSMEs and Private companies also needed to be promoted and incentivized for their participation in processing and value addition infrastructure in the animal husbandry sector.
The AHIDF approved today would incentivize infrastructure investments in dairy, meat processing and animal feed plants. The eligible beneficiaries under the Scheme would be Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs), MSMEs, Section 8 Companies, Private Companies and individual entrepreneur with only 10% margin money contribution by them. The balance 90% would be the loan component to be made available to them by scheduled banks.
The Central Government will provide 3% interest subvention to eligible beneficiaries. There will be 2 years moratorium period for repayment of loan with 6 years repayment period thereafter. Government of India would also set up a Credit Guarantee Fund of Rs. 750 crore to be managed by NABARD which would provide credit guarantee to the projects which are covered under the MSME defined ceilings. Guarantee Coverage would be upto 25% of the Credit facility of borrower.
The Cabinet said there was a huge potential that was waiting to be unlocked through private sector investment in animal husbandry sector. “The AHIDF with the interest subvention scheme for private investors will ensure availability of capital to meet upfront investment required for these projects and also help enhance overall returns/ pay back for investors. Such investments in processing and value addition infrastructure by eligible beneficiaries would also promote exports,” it stated.
It pointed out that since almost 50-60% of the final value of dairy output in India flows back to farmers, the growth in this sector could have significant direct impact on farmer’s income. “Size of dairy market and farmers’ realization from milk sales is closely linked with development of organized off-take by cooperative and private dairies. Thus, investment of Rs. 15,000 crores through AHIDF would not only leverage several times more private investment but would also motivate farmers to invest more on inputs thereby driving higher productivity leading to increase in farmers income,” it stated, and claimed that the measures approved today through AHIDF would also help in direct and indirect livelihood creation for about 35 lakh persons.