India creates special fishery, aquaculture fund to boost output, jobs

The Indian cabinet has approved special Rs 7,522 crore fund aimed at boosting production and jobs in the country’s fisheries and aquaculture sector, a government statement said.

It said the Fisheries and Aquaculture Infrastructure Development Fund (FIDF) was approved by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

“The approval entails an estimated fund size of Rs.7,522 crore, comprising Rs.5,266.40 crore to be raised by the Nodal Loaning Entities (NLEs), Rs. 1,316.6 crore beneficiaries contribution and Rs.939.48 crore budgetary support from the Government of India. The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), National Cooperatives Development Corporation (NCDC) and all scheduled Banks shall be the NLEs,” it added.

The statement said that the aim was to augment fish production to achieve its target of 15 million tonne by 2020 set under the Blue Revolution; and to achieve a sustainable growth of 8% -9% thereafter to raise fish production to the level of about 20 million tonnes by 2022-23.

The fund, the statement said, would also provide employment opportunities to over 9.40 lakh fishers/fishermen/fisherfolk and other entrepreneurs in fishing and allied activities; create infrastructure for both marine and inland fishing and allow the adoption of new technologies.

Shekhar Ghosh is a communications consultant and and former journalist, who has edited and written for publications such as like Business India, Business Standard, Business Today and Outlook.

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