NABARD earmarks Rs 1000 Cr for cold chain infrastructure
STATE TIMES NEWS
JAMMU: National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) earmarked Rs.1000 crore for providing direct finance to cold chain infrastructure projects in the country, out of the Rs 5000 crore Warehouse Infrastructure Fund announced in the Union Budget 2014-15. Cold chain players in the public, private and cooperative sectors besides Farmers’ Producers Organizations (FPOs) can now avail this direct credit window from NABARD at competitive interest rates.
Addressing various stakeholders recently, Dr. Harsh Kumar Bhanwala, Chairman NABARD said, “NABARD has sanctioned warehousing projects worth Rs.5000 crore during 2013-14 and we want to give a fillip to the much required cold storages with this specific earmarking of Rs.1000 crores to begin with”. These cold chain projects can benefit horticulture, dairy, meat and meat products, fish and fish products and other agriculture products to contain post production economic and quality losses.
Dinesh Rai, Chairman, Warehousing Development and Regulatory Authority (WDRA), appreciated NABARD’s decision to give boost to Cold Chain Infrastructure and called for creation of integrated clusters of cold storages with dedicated power feeders to address the issues of uninterrupted power requirement to such units.
Sanjay Kaul, MD and CEO, National Collateral Management Services Limited (NCML) complimented NABARD and called for adoption of energy efficient technology in the cold chain to bring down the operational costs.
Pawanesh Kohli Chief Advisor National Centre for Cold Chain Development (NCCD) emphasised upon the need for development of integrated cold chain infrastructure for reducing the post-harvest losses of perishables besides augmenting the capacity of pack houses, pre cooling units and reefer vans in completing the efficient building of integrated cold chains.
Gajendra Bhujabal, Economic Advisor in the Ministry of Food Processing Industries, GoI emphasized on the significance of cold supply chain for both horticulture and non-horticulture products explained the financial assistance schemes of the Ministry in supporting such projects.
As many as 25 major investors from the cold chain industry who participated in the meeting complimented the initiatives and gave valuable feedback and also exhorted NABARD to enhance this allocation.
Amalorpavanathan and H R Dave, Deputy Managing Directors and S.N.A Jinnah, Chief General Manager also participated in the discussions.