The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on Wednesday gave approval for committed price support of ₹17,408.85 crore to the Cotton Corporation of India (CCI) for the cotton seasons (October to September) from 2014-2015 to 2020-2021.
Since the cotton prices touched Minimum Support Price (MSP) levels, the CCI had procured cotton at MSP prices during these years.
During the COVID-19 pandemic in the last two cotton seasons (2019-2020 and 2020-2021), the CCI procured around one third of the cotton production in the country, i.e. about 200 lakh bales, and disbursed more than ₹55,000 crore directly in the bank accounts of around 40 lakh farmers.
According to a press release, during cotton season 2020-2021 (October to September), area under cotton cultivation was 133 lakh hectares with estimated production of 360 lakh bales, which account for around 25% of total global cotton production.
For the current cotton season (October 2021 to September 2022), the CCI has made adequate arrangements in all 11 major cotton growing States to meet MSP operations if needed, the press release futher added.
The CCEA also approved reservation norms for mandatory use of jute in packaging for the Jute Year 2021 – 2022 (July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022). The mandatory packaging norms approved provide for 100% reservation of the foodgrains and 20% of sugar to be compulsorily packed in jute bags.
The reservation norms will further protect the interest of domestic production of raw jute and jute packaging material in the country as packaging in jute packaging material consumed around 66.57% of the raw jute produced in the country (in 2020-2021). By bringing into effect the provision of Jute Packaging Material (JPM) Act, the Government will provide relief to 3.7 lakh workers employed in jute mills and ancillary units as well as support the livelihood of around 40 lakh farm families, the press release said.
The average Production of Jute Sacking Bags is about 30 lakhs bales and the Union government purchases jute sacking bags worth approximately ₹8,000 crore every year for packing of foodgrains, ensuring guaranteed market for the produce of jute farmers and workers, the press release added.