August 19, 2021 2:43:56 am
The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved the implementation of National Mission on Edible Oils – Oil Palm (NMEO-OP) — a new Centrally sponsored scheme with a special focus on the Northeast and Andaman and Nicobar Islands. This comes less than a week after Prime Minister Narendra Modi mentioned in his Independence Day speech that oil palm has a huge potential in the Northeast.
The Cabinet also approved a revival package of Rs 77.45 crore for revival of the North Eastern Regional Agricultural Marketing Corporation Limited (NERAMAC) — a central Public Section Enterprise under the administrative control of the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Regional (MDoNER).
Through this, the government said, “remunerative price to the farmers of NER for their products will be ensured” and it will help NERAMAC to “implement various innovative plans” to promote products of Northeastern farmers.
The government mentioned that the new oil palm scheme will cost Rs 11,040 crore, of which the Union government’s share will be Rs 8,844 crore. Through the scheme, the government intends to increase the productivity and area of oilseeds and oil palm.
At the moment, around 98 per cent of crude palm oil (CPO) is imported.
The government said in a statement that due to the “heavy dependence on imports for edible oils, it is important to make efforts for increasing the domestic production of edible oils in which increasing area and productivity of oil palm plays an important part”.
It said that under the scheme, it is proposed to cover “an additional area” of 6.5 lakh hectare for oil palm till the year 2025-26 and thereby reach the target of 10 lakh hectares. “The production of Crude Palm Oil (CPO) is expected to go upto 11.20 lakh tonnes by 2025-26 and upto 28 lakh tonnes by 2029-30,” the government noted.
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