Friday, May 18, 2012

Rangarajan panel to handle excess foodgrain stocks.

To ease pressure on storage, an expert group headed by PMEAC Chairman C Rangarajan has suggested the government to immediately export 2 million tonnes of wheat from government stocks, and make additional supply of 13 million tonnes of the grain via ration shops and in the open market.
The panel, in the report submitted to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday, said the release of 15 million tonnes of wheat stock from central godowns would lead to subsidy outgo of Rs 16,790 crore. It also suggested wheat export of one million tonnes via private trade, for which subsidy outgo would be lower at Rs 150 crore.
Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, Food Minister K V Thomas and and Commerce Minister Anand Sharma on Friday discussed ways to implementing the panel’s suggestions to ease pressure on storage during the monsoon season.
At present, the government godowns are overflowing with granaries of 71.12 million tonnes, which is higher by 20 per cent from last year period. The storage capacity is for 62.8 million tonnes.

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