Cabinet Briefing Highlights: Cheap, easy loans for farmers, street vendors; Equity financing for MSMEs

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Union Cabinet Briefing | Highlights: The Union Cabinet today approved key economic support measures for MSMEs, farmers, agricultural workers and street vendors in what the government said were “historic” decisions. Among the decisions made today, the MSME definition has been relaxed and easier credit for street vendors and farmers has been announced.

Union Cabinet Briefing | Highlights: The Union Cabinet today approved extensive economic support measures for MSMEs, farmers, agricultural workers and street vendors in what the government said were “historic” decisions. Among the decisions made today, the MSME definition has been relaxed and easier credit for street vendors and farmers has been announced. Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar announced that the minimum support prices for 14 kharif plants would be increased in order to relieve India’s farmers. Finally, the government increased MSP for sunflower seeds to Rs 5,885 / 100 kg, Jowar hybrids to Rs 2,620 / 100 kg, corn to Rs 1,850 / 100 kg and Tur to Rs 6,000 / 100 kg. This is the first cabinet briefing after the Modi government announced that it would gradually lift lockdown restrictions. In Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s economic package of Rs 21 lakh crore, the government set aside Rs 1.63 lakh crore for the agricultural sector. In addition to major agricultural reforms, the government has changed the stringent Essential Commodities Act (ESA) to remove grains, edible oils, oilseeds, legumes, onions and potatoes from their jurisdiction. A new law will also be enacted to allow farmers to choose the market in which they want to sell their products by removing barriers to trade between states and enabling agricultural products to be traded electronically. But even before the center announced agrarian reforms, states like Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh had announced similar reforms to help farmers in their respective states. UP CM Yogi Adityanath announced that fruit and vegetable growers in the state would not have to pay a mandi fee to sell their products, and the mandi fee for 46 perishable fruits and vegetables was also waived. The MP government led by Shivraj Singh Chouhan also exonerated farmers by allowing them to sell their produce in a more competitive market.

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