By Laxman Kafle, Kathmandu, May 28: The government has allocated Rs 41.40 billion for the overall development of agricultural and livestock sector.
Presenting the annual budget for fiscal year 2020/21 in a joint session of the Federal Parliament on Thursday, Finance Minister Dr Yubaraj Khatiwada said that the government had increased budget for commercialisation, modernisation and mechanisation of agriculture by mobilising the available labour forces.
The government has increased budget for agriculture by Rs 6.6 billion to Rs 41.40 billion for the next fiscal year. The government had allocated Rs 34.80 billion for the agriculture sector in the current fiscal year.
Dr Khatiwada said subsidy would be provided in agricultural inputs and chemical fertilizers.
Likewise, Rs 3.22 billion has been allocated for expansion and restructuring of the Prime Minister Agriculture Modernisation Project.
Under this programme, development of one production pocket area in all local levels on the basis of potentiality of crops will be ensured. Around 250 pocket areas would be developed in the upcoming FY, Dr Khatiwada said.
The upcoming budget has also set a target to make the country self-reliant on basic foods, vegetables and fruits at the earliest.
To increase agricultural productivity, the government will be focusing on optimum utilization of land and promoting the potential products, said the FM.
“A land utilization map will be developed for the proper utilisation of land and construction in fertile lands will be discouraged," he said. "Also, land banks will be developed. The budget has proposed to allocate Rs 500 million for investment share in land bank,”
The budget has proposed to establish land banks in around 300 local levels in the coordination with the federal, state and local governments in the upcoming FY.
The special programmes related to vegetables, milk and meat production would be carried out to make the country self-reliant in these sectors in the coming fiscal year, he added.