Govt fixes minimum support price for paddy

Kathmandu, July 24

The government has fixed the minimum support price for paddy for the ongoing fiscal year at Rs 23.30 and Rs 24.60 per kilogram, depending on the variety.

As per the recommendation of the Ministry of Agriculture, Land Management and Cooperatives (MoALMC), the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies (MoICS) has fixed the support price for thick paddy at Rs 23.30 per kg and Rs 24.60 per kilogram for medium-sized paddy, informed Yogendra Karki, spokesperson for MoALMC.

The minimum support price for paddy is expected to be endorsed by the next Cabinet meeting.

The support price for paddy was Rs 22 per kg (for thick paddy) and Rs 24 per kg (for medium-sized paddy) in the last fiscal year.

“We have raised the minimum price for paddy this year owing to slight increment in production cost of the crop due to rising inflation,” said Karki.

According to him, paddy's support price has been fixed on the basis of its production cost in the country and its price in the Indian market.

On July 4, the Indian government had raised minimum support price for paddy by INR 200 per quintal to INR 1,750.

The minimum support price for paddy has been raised this year also to support farmers whose paddy plantation was affected by the adverse monsoon last year, as per MoALMC.

Meanwhile, Karki said that the minimum support price for the cereal crop has been fixed much earlier this year as delay in formal announcement had been affecting farmers across the country that had completed harvesting the crop.

The government had set support price for paddy for fiscal year 2017-18 in December.

The government had resumed fixing support price for paddy from 2016-17, following complaints from farmers that they were being deprived of reasonable price for their produce.

The support price fixed by the government means that farmers will get a reasonable price for their harvest even if there is a huge drop in farm price. In case the market price of paddy drops below the base rate fixed by the government, the government is liable to purchase paddy from farmers at the support price.

Due to favourable monsoon this year, the government has set a target to produce record high 5.6 million metric tonnes of paddy in ongoing fiscal. Production of the cereal crop has been increasing in recent years.

The country recorded paddy output of 5.23 million metric tonnes in 2017-18 while the annual production of the crop was 5.3 million metric tonnes in 2016-17 and 4.3 million metric tonnes in 2015-16.

Comparative figures

Year

Thick paddy

Medium-sized paddy

production

2016-17

Rs 20.70

Rs 22.30

5.3m tonnes

2017-18

Rs 22

Rs 24

5.23m tonnes

2018- 19

Rs 23.30

Rs 24.60

5.6m tonnes (Projected)