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Coronavirus: Tk9,500 crore allocated for agriculture subsidies

  • Published at 08:36 pm April 13th, 2020
PM_Hasina_ Videoconference
File photo: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina during a videoconference at Ganabhaban on Sunday, March 29, 2020 Focus Bangla

The government also allocates Tk200 crore for agricultural equipment

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said that necessary steps have been taken to support the country's agriculture sector for ensuring food security amid the coronavirus pandemic.

She said that the government has allocated Tk9,500 crore for subsidies on the country's agriculture sector while addressing a televised speech to the nation on the eve of the Bangla New Year on Monday.

"Not only do we have to keep our agriculture sector up and running but we will have to increase our efforts during this crisis. We have to use every inch of the farmlands available so that we don’t fall short of food in the upcoming days.

"I have given directives to the ministries related with agriculture in this regard. We have taken measures to ensure that there is no shortage of seeds, fertilizers, pesticides, and other agricultural materials and they reach the hands of the farmers on time," she said.

"We will purchase additional 200,000 metric tons of rice than last year that the farmers get a fair price for their crops. We will have to spend Tk860 crore more for this. We have also allocated Tk200 crore for agricultural equipment.

"We have undertaken a new scheme of Tk5,000 crore with maximum 4% interest rate to provide loans to small and medium level farmers which includes fish farmers, as well as the dairy and poultry sector," she added.

The premier also said that there is no food shortage, adding, "We are monitoring the situation. We are taking all necessary steps accordingly. There is enough food stored in the government warehouses. The country's households also have enough food in reserve.

"By the grace of Allah, we had a bumper harvest of Aman crop earlier. Now we are projecting that we will yield a bumper crop of Boro this season. 

"We have taken special measures to ensure agricultural supplies and distributions remain uninterrupted."

As of Monday, Bangladesh has confirmed 803 coronavirus cases with the death toll rising to 39 after five new fatalities were reported.

The fast-spreading Covid-19 has so far, killed 115,000 people in more than 200 countries and territories.

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