Posted on 14 September 2012 by Parasnath Chaudhary
U S Awasthi Managing Director of Iffco has said India’s fertilizer major has decided to export fertilizers to the countries in South Asia. It has already sold more than 15 thousand tonne of DAP to Nepal.
As fertilizer is in the negative list of export, it has sought permission from India government to sell crop nutrients to Oman in the Middle East.
A sharp reduction in domestic demand for fertilizers caused by a weak monsoon explains why Iffco is intent on exporting its products. The company has a huge stock of DAP and NPK and it feels it can do a good amount of export.
According to Awasthi, Oman has always helped India with supplies of urea, India should reciprocate by supplying crop nutrients to meet Oman’s needs now.
Awasthi claimed the fertilizer industry faces a crisis in that domestic demand for DAP and NPK has fallen by 29 and 27 percent respectively. Iffco alone has suffered a staggering drop of 32 percent in DAP sales and 44 percent in NPK sales, he added.
Posted on 07 September 2012 by Parasnath Chaudhary
Rock Phosphate is a raw material that is required for producing DAP and India imports about 90 percent of it.
The whole thing being prohibitively expensive, the govt is seriously considering to seek a solution to the problem.
It is against this backdrop that the govt set up a working group to go into a detailed analysis of the problem.
The group has suggested a consortium of public -private companies to acquire mineral deposits in Uzbekistan and Jordan.
The group has also argued for creating a Rs. 1,000 crore fund for the purpose.India govt minister of state for chemicals and fertilisers has said all this in a written reply to the Lower House of parliament.
The government is already active preparing a concept paper on setting up a sovereign wealth fund (SEF) to acquire fertilizer and energy assets in several foreign countries.
The 42 member group has also urged the govt of India to create a fund with a corpus of of USD 5 billion.
Posted on 29 August 2012 by Ajay Jha
The parliamentary standing committee on chemicals and fertilizer has given vent to anger over black marketing and artificial shortage being created by hoarders and corrupt businessmen in the country in its report.
Both the central govt and the fertilizer companies are involved in this corrupt business, the report asserts.
The hoarders have been on the prowl but there are no steps being taken to check them. The department of fertilizers has utterly failed to stop them, the report noted.
Basically, it is the responsibility of the central govt to check hoarding and scarcity of fertilizers. The govt should take hard steps against those responsible for black-marketing and corruption, the report added.
The parliamentary panel has also called upon the fertilizer companies to help the govt curb the evil tendency. Two fertilizer producing companies Iffco and Kribhco belong to the cooperative sector with Iffco alone meeting about 25 percent of domestic demand.
The panel has asked the fertilizer dept to make available gas at acceptable rates.
Besides, the panel has called upon the govt to fashion a new investment policy to quicken the pace of fertilizer production in the country.
Posted on 24 August 2012 by Manoj Kushwah
Bihar is a state which is witness to large scale hoarding, black-marketing and smuggling of fertilizers. The State Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has urged the center to ensure the availability of fertilizers in the state.
Nitish called the Union Minister of State for Chemicals and fertilizers informing him of an acute shortage of urea in particular in Bihar.
Sources say the shortage counts 1.96 lakh metric tonnes of urea this year. While Bihar needs 7.90 lakh metric tonnes altogether, it has so far been supplied with only 5.94 lakh metric tonnes.
Bihar chief minister is taking personal interest in the matter and has instructed his officials to ensure farmers experience no difficulty procuring the fertilizer.
Posted on 23 August 2012 by Dipak Kumar
The government has told Parliament it is creating a sovereign wealth fund to buy fertiliser and energy assets abroad.
Union Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertilisers said the govt is formulating a concept paper on the subject. The paper is being worked out in close consultation with various ministries including the planning commission, he added.
According to the minister, his ministry and the department of economic affairs have already been considering the matter.
The working group on fertilisers set up by the planning commission had earlier suggested that the country should seriously consider buying fertiliser mineral assets abroad to be able to supply the deficiency in the domestic supply, the minister added.
Sources say the country is still badly dependent on imports of fertilisers including potash and DAP.
The govt has assured parliament that it would not hike the administered prices of fertilisers. Ferlilizer giant IFFCO has already cracked a deal in Canada for producing fertilizer.
Posted on 22 August 2012 by Dipak Kumar
Bihar police say nearly two hundred bags of fertilizer were being illegally taken to Nepal via SItamarhi district in the state. All the bags of urea have been seized and two persons have been detained in this connection.
The criminals were arrested as the police had been tipped off.
Sitamarhi district of north Bihar is close to the Nepalese border.
It is said Bihar never ceases to be copy for the media so far as smuggling of fertilizer to Nepal is concerned.
Cases of rampant corruption in fertilizer have been reported in the past with even charges leveled against fertilizer cooperatives which have been accused of being involved in the hanky-panky.
Posted on 17 August 2012 by Parasnath Chaudhary
Odisha Chief Minister Navin Patnaik wants the center to ensure farmers get 45 days credit from the fertilizer companies. He has sent a letter to the central govt in this connection.
The chief minister said the cooperative organizations could play a very useful role in the present situation when an artificial scarcity of fertilizers is being created by the greedy dealers. However, the govt’s order that the cooperative organizations should be given only a week for fund mobilization has adversely affected the fertilizer supply in Odisha, chief minister added.
According to the chief minister, there has been a huge spike in the prices of fertilizers especially that of phosphatic and potassic ones. Due to drastic fluctuations in the prices, the Odisha farmers are facing serious difficulties, the chief minister emphasized.
The farmers are being exploited by the unscrupulous elements dealing in fertilizers. Not only that, because of high prices of phosphatic and potassic , farmers are using urea more which could quickly degrade soil and reduce crop yield, Navin Patnaik noted.
At a time when the states in the eastern part of the country are preparing for a green revolution through an increase in consumption of fertilizers, the present developments do not augur well, the chief minister remarked.
Posted on 10 August 2012 by Ajay Jha
Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertiliser Srikant Jena has informed the lower house of parliament that there is disparity between requirement and domestic production in urea and the gap is being met through imports.
The minister said the country would import nearly a million tonnes of urea in 2012-13 representing a rise of 15 percent.
According to the details released by the govt. the requirement of urea is likely to spike by 5 percent to 32.08 MT this fiscal as opposed to 30.52 million tonnes in 2011-12.
The minister added whether the rising costs of fertilisers has had an adverse effect on farming has not been examined in detail by experts.
Official sources say there has recently been a continuous rise in the use of urea in the country.
Posted on 05 July 2012 by Parasnath Chaudhary
Inaugurating the international cooperative conference in the capital, President Pratibha Patil described cooperatives as institutions that could bring about a fundamental transformation in society by empowering the weaker sections of population. She said the cooperative movement could ensure inclusive growth especially enabling women and youth to make their invaluable contributions to the country’s development.
President called for the establishment of the woman cooperatives and incorporation of information about the cooperative movement on the curriculum of the educational institutions.
President Mrs. Patil added about thirty crore people in the country are connected to the cooperative movement engaging in activities such as credit, housing, dairying, textiles and fertilizer.
Expatiating on the achievements of the cooperative movement, she described ‘white revolution’ as the piece de resistance that made India one of the largest producers of milk in the world.
IFFCO was especially the aim of her most favourable remarks when she called it the biggest fertilizer cooperative in the world that has always been at farmers’ service.
Posted on 28 June 2012 by Parasnath Chaudhary
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalitha has never been the kind of politician to mince words. In a missive dashed off to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh she has severely criticized the central govt’s nutrient based subsidy scheme and graphically pointed out the perils of continuing with it.
She has called for an immediate abandonment of the scheme and underscored the need for reverting to the MRP method.
According to her, an unreliable supply of fertilizers to Tamil Nadu has followed the introduction of the scheme putting the basic interests of lakhs of farmers in the state in jeopardy.
She has added the NBS policy has given the freedom and wiggle room to manufacturers and importers of fertilizers to fix the MRP in the way they deem fit. In consequence, prices of fertilizers have gone up by 247 to 262 percent in recent days.
To make matters worse, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister says, the dept of fertilisers has effected a huge reduction in subsidy. Agriculture has become uneconomical in the state and farmers are suffering in multiple ways.
J Jayalalitha has urged Manmohan Singh’s intervention to redress the situation.