Dilip Poudel, My Republica, August 18, 2019
KATHMANDU: The grant will be focused on providing the grant to individuals returning from foreign employment and educated youths.
The government has decided to distribute grant of Rs 500 million to youths who are interested to come in agriculture. According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock, the government will provide Rs 5, 00,000 to 10, 00,000 grants to those who want to do agriculture entrepreneurship.
The government has brought this program to attract youths who have returned from foreign employment. “The entrepreneurs have to import agro-products, so it is difficult,” said Tej Bahadur Subedi, added spokesperson of the Ministry.
A work plan is being prepared at the ministry to distribute Rs 10 million grants. The government has made this strategy as the traditional agriculture methodology did not increase productivity.
Commercial Agriculture Farm is also a plan of the Ministry. “We have been preparing a modality to focus on the youths who want to do entrepreneurship,” said Subedi. “Our objective is to create employment in the agriculture sector within the country itself.”
The Ministry has plan to make 500 youth self-employed. The Ministry is preparing to provide 25 to 50% grants for now.
Concerned stakeholders have said that the ministry should be transparent in this activity as earlier too similar programs have not been found effective.
According to Udhav Adhikari, past-president of National Farmer’s Group Federation the criteria for distribution of grant should be systematic. “Many genuine farmers hadn’t received the grant earlier,” he said.
Adhikari said that mostly people affiliated to ruling parties are benefited from the grant program. “We need to build a mechanism to reach the targeted community. The culture of exploiting the amount by distributing to the fake farmers should be reduced,” said Adhikari.
The government has been organizing agriculture modernization and mechanization program to commercialize agriculture.
The budget of Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock for this year is Rs 34.80 million. Majority of the amount of the budget is in Agriculture Modernization Project.
The government has plans to spend Rs 8.10 billion in the project. Rs 9 billion have been allocated for grant in Chemical Fertilizer. The ministry has said that the government will be providing subsidy in machinery and import with fixed criteria in commercial farming, livestock farming, medicinal herb farming. The government has kept this program in priority for agriculture commercialization.
The government also has special program to promote the production of maize, potato, onion and mutton. The program has been implemented to minimize the import of these products.
The government has also taken forward the program to develop farmers’ school, market infrastructure, agro-products store, commercial livestock farm, artificial breeding, animal feed programs.