India's agricultural credit likely to reach 7.35T rupees in 2013-2014 agricultural year, exceeding target of 7T rupees, finance minister says; target of 8T rupees set for 2014-2015 agricultural year

NEW DELHI , February 18, 2014 () – Indian Finance Minister Shri P. Chidambaram today informed the Lok Sabha about the 'stellar performance' of the agriculture sector. He said that agricultural credit is likely to touch Rs. 7,35,000 crore in the current year, exceeding the target of Rs. 7,00,000 crore. Finance Minister set a target of Rs. 8,00,000 crore for 2014-15. He also said that in the current year agricultural GDP growth is estimated at 4.6 percent. He said this while presenting the Interim Budget for 2014-15.

He also mentioned about the interest subvention scheme introduced in 2006-07. There is a subvention of 2 percent and an incentive of 3 percent for prompt payment, thus reducing the effective rate of interest on farm loans to 4 percent. So far, Rs. 23,924 crore has been released under the scheme.

Foodgrain production in 2012-13 was 255.36 million tonnes and the estimate for the current year is 263 million tonnes. Estimates of production of sugarcane, cotton, pulses, oilseeds and quality seeds point to new records, the Finance Minister said.

Finance Minister further said that agriculture exports in 2012-13 stood at USD 41 billion versus imports of USD 20 billion. In 2013-14, agriculture exports are likely to cross USD 45 billion.

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