Kathmandu, May 15 In the 2020-21 fiscal year that begins in mid-July, the government plans to implement a 10-year project with an aim to raise productivity in the agriculture sector by two-folds. While announcing the policies and programmes today, President Bidhya Devi Bhandari declared that productivity in the agriculture sector will be doubled by prioritising modernisation, mechanisation and commercialisation. She further said that the government will implement a policy of utilising all types of private and public land suitable for agriculture. She further said that the Prime Minister Agriculture Modernisation Project will be revised to implement it more effectively across the nation. Meanwhile, starting from next fiscal, the government will begin listing farmers so that they are able to avail all the facilities to support them in production, processing and supply through the government. “The Nepal Agriculture Research Council will be improved for the development of the agriculture sector,” the president added. “A special programme will be implemented to develop hybrid crops.” President Bhandari also announced that the government will establish Agriculture and Livestock Excellence Centres in all provinces to provide practical knowledge and technical support to the farmers. “The new policy of the government will play a role to attract women cooperative groups, unemployed and migrant workers towards the agriculture sector by providing a guarantee of their investment,” she said. She added that the government will also build roads, provide electricity and irrigation facilities and construct cold stores. According to her, facilities of collection and marketing of agricultural products will also be made available for the farmers. Meanwhile, like in the previous years this year too the government has announced it will regulate the grant distribution system. The government has also made a commitment to make arrangements for timely availability of seeds and fertilisers for farmers. “Organic agriculture will be promoted and the government will provide support to promote organic produce in the international market,” she added. The president also announced that the government will promote eco-tourism and agro-tourism. President Bhandari stated that the government will study the impact of the COVID-19 on the tourism sector and will implement sustainable programmes to revive the tourism industry. She also announced that the Tribhuvan International Airport will be upgraded as a boutique airport by next year. The president also mentioned that by next fiscal year, Gautam Buddha International Airport will come into operation while construction of Pokhara International Airport will be completed. Construction of Nijgadh International Airport will begin from next fiscal year, and renovation of domestic airports has also been prioritised in the government’s policy and programme.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on May 16, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.