The centre’s planned insurance plan for the plantation sector will protect small-scale rubber growers from price fluctuations, a senior official said today.
“The main shield used by developed countries in protecting their farmers against price risks is comprehensive crop insurance schemes,” Rajani Ranjan Rashmi, additional secretary, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, said at the ‘India Rubber Meet 2016’ here.
“Government of India is also in the process of launching an insurance scheme for plantation sector, including rubber which would cover price fluctuations among other perils, with the premium shared by the central government, state governments and the beneficiaries,” he said. During 1998 to 2001, when the segment hit a slump, the Centre had taken numerous measures to restrict imports.
“But we have to be aware of one major difference in rubber situation between 1998-2001 and the present. During the earlier period, rubber prices were low and there was no issue of availability in the domestic market. Currently, rubber prices are low, but there is a considerable shortage in the domestic market,” he said.
The government has taken several steps to protect rubber growers, such as an increase in the import duty on dry forms of natural rubber to the maximum level of 25 percent, decrease of export obligation period, port restrictions in import and temporary suspension of import under the advance authorization.