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Union Budget 2018: Govt to boost exports of agricultural products, says Arun Jaitley

The commerce ministry is working on a comprehensive policy to promote export of agriculture commodities like tea, coffee, fruits and vegetables.

india Updated: Feb 01, 2018 12:02 IST
PTI, New Delhi
Union Budget 2018,Budget 2018 Arun jaitley,Budget 2018 Latest News
Farmers sit in a semi-dried up paddy field at Likhambha village of Sanad taluka, some 40 km from Ahmedabad.(AFP File Photo)

The government will take steps to boost exports of agriculture commodities that have the potential of reaching $100 billion, finance minister Arun Jaitley said on Thursday.

The country’s agricultural exports are around $30 billion at present. (LIVE UPDATES)

“India’s agri exports potential is as high as $100 billion against a current export of $30 billion. To realise this potential, export of agri commodities will be liberalised,” Jaitley said while presenting the Union Budget 2018-19 in the Lok Sabha.

He also proposed to set up state-of-the-art facility in 42 mega food parks.

The announcement assumes significance as the commerce ministry is working on a comprehensive policy covering issues such as logistics to promote export of agriculture commodities like tea, coffee, fruits and vegetables.

India is one of biggest producers and exporters of agriculture commodities.

Elements which could become part of the policy include certification and traceability of items. Besides, the ministry is also in the process of identifying countries where there is a maximum import demand for agricultural goods.

Agricultural products account for over 10% of the country’s total exports.

India mainly exports tea, coffee, rice, cereals, tobacco, spices, cashew, oil meals, fruits and vegetables and marine products.

In December 2017, out of 13 agricultural commodities being tracked by the commerce ministry, five categories -- other cereals, cashew, oil meals, oil seeds, fruits and vegetables -- reported negative export growth.

First Published: Feb 01, 2018 12:02 IST