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Cabinet approves computerization of Primary Agriculture Credit Societies with Rs 2516 crore

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The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved the computerization of Primary Agriculture Credit Societies PACS. Briefing media in New Delhi today, Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Singh Thakur said,  the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs CCEA has decided that 63 thousand functional PACS will be computerized with an overall budget outlay of two thousand five hundred 16 crore rupees. He said, the move will benefit 13 crore farmers.

The PACS constitutes the lowest of the three-tier Short-term cooperative credit STCC in the country comprising approximately 13 crore farmers as its members, which is crucial for the development of the rural economy. PACS accounts for 41 per cent of the  KCC( Kisan Credit Card)    loans given by all entities in the Country and 95 per cent of these KCC loans through PACS are to the Small and Marginal farmers. The other two tiers, State Cooperative Banks and District Central Cooperative Banks have already been automated by the NABARD and brought on Common Banking Software.

The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs CCEA also approved deregulation of the sale of domestically produced crude oil. Mr. Thakur said, the move will ensure marketing freedom for all exploration and production companies.

The condition in the Production Sharing Contracts to sell crude oil to the Government or its Nominee or Government Companies shall accordingly be waived off. All exploration and production companies will now be free to sell crude oil from their fields in the domestic market. Government revenues like Royalty, cess, etc. will continue to be calculated on a uniform basis across all Contracts.  As earlier, exports will not be permissible.

This decision will further spur economic activities, incentivize making investments in the upstream oil and gas sector and builds on a series of targeted transformative reforms rolled out since 2014. The policies relating to production, infrastructure and marketing of oil and gas have been made more transparent with a focus on ease of doing business and facilitating more operational flexibility to operators or industry.

The Union Cabinet has also approved the categorization of the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure CDRI as an International Organization and the signing of the Headquarters Agreement HQA with CDRI for granting it the exemptions, immunities and privileges as contemplated under the United Nations (Privileges and Immunities) Act, 1947.

Categorization of CDRI as an International Organisation and signing of HQA with CDRI for grant of exemptions, immunities and privileges will provide it with an independent and international legal persona so that it can efficiently and effectively carry out its functions internationally. This will help the CDRI in deputing experts to other countries that are particularly vulnerable to disaster risk, deploying funds globally and receiving contributions from member countries for CDRI activities, making available technical expertise to assist countries to develop resilient infrastructure in accordance with their disaster and climate risks and resources and imparting assistance to countries in adopting appropriate risk governance arrangements and strategies for resilient infrastructure. Since its launch, 31 Countries, six International Organizations and two private sector organizations have joined as members of CDRI.

The Union Cabinet was today apprised of a Memorandum of Understanding MoU signed between the Department of Science and Technology of India and the Ministry of Trade and Industry of Singapore on Cooperation in the fields of Science, Technology and Innovation.  The MoU was signed in February this year.

The MoU will provide a mechanism and help in creating an ecosystem that will promote innovation and entrepreneurship in both countries leading to new technology creation, manpower training, and IP generation through collaboration.

The Cabinet has also apprised of a Strategic Partnership Agreement signed between the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, the Government of India and the International Renewable Energy Agency IRENA. The Agreement was signed in January this year.

The aim of the Agreement is to drive ambition, leadership and knowledge on green energy transitions based on renewable energy in India. The Agreement will help India’s energy transition efforts and will also help the world in combating climate change.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that today’s Cabinet decision on the computerization of Primary Agriculture Credit Societies PACS will benefit crores of farmers, particularly small and marginal farmers. In a tweet, Mr. Modi said, the decision will also enhance transparency and lead to better service delivery.

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