Sustaining 4 per cent growth in the farm sector is a challenging task though it remains one of the top priorities of the government, Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh said today.
Singh said India has the about 17 per cent of the world’s population and to feed the country it has just 2.4 per cent of the total geographical area.
“We are conscious of our need for sustainable agricultural development keeping the interest of future generations in mind,” Singh said while speaking at the UN body Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) here.
Agriculture is a vital component of India’s economy, contributing over 16 per cent of India’s GDP in 2014-15 and providing employment to 55 per cent of its population.
“… there is no doubt that sustaining an overall agricultural growth rate of about 4 per cent over long years is a major challenge in the face of stagnating productivity levels combined with increasing abiotic and biotic stresses which constrain crop yields,” Singh said.
The government is focusing on research products which can provide us breakthrough in yields and be accessible and affordable for different categories of farmers, the Minister added.
He also said, “… I would like to inform that agricultural growth remains one of the top most priorities for our government.”
The government is addressing the concerns of farming community with renewed focus on public and private investments to provide infrastructure, ensure technology transfer to farmers, generate employment both on and off the fields and to sustain agricultural development as well, he said.
The agriculture sector grew at 0.2 per cent in 2014-15.