At 157.35 million hectares, India holds the second largest agricultural land in the world. With 20 agro-climatic regions, all 15 major climates in the world exist in India. India is the largest producer of spices, pulses, milk, tea, cashew and jute; and the second largest producer of wheat, rice, fruits and vegetables, sugarcane, cotton and oilseeds. Further, India is 2nd in global production of fruits and vegetables, and is the largest producer of mango and banana. It also has the highest productivity of grapes in the world.
As per estimates by the Central Statistics Office (CSO), the share of agriculture and allied sectors (including agriculture, livestock, forestry and fishery) was 15.35 per cent of the Gross Value Added (GVA) during 2015–16 at 2011–12 prices.
Budget 2016-17 proposed some slew measures to improve agriculture and increase farmers’ welfare such as 2.85 million hectares to be brought under irrigation, Rs 287,000 crore (US$ 42.11 billion) grant in aid to be given to gram panchayats and municipalities and 100 per cent village electrification targeted by May 01, 2018.
The 12th Five-Year Plan estimates the food grains storage capacity to expand to 35 MT. Also, a 4 per cent growth would help restructure the agriculture sector in India in the next few years. The agriculture sector in India is expected to generate better momentum in the next few years due to increased investments in agricultural infrastructure such as irrigation facilities, warehousing and cold storage.
References: Media Reports, Press Releases, Press Information Bureau, RNCOS Report, Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP), Union Budget 2016-17.
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