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Reiterating Prime Minister’s commitment towards “Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas , Sabka Vishwas” and “Ease of Living” for people of India, Union minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in her budget speech in Parliament today proposed 16 action points focusing on doubling Farmers income, Horticulture sector, Food storage, Animal Husbandry and Blue economy.

Doubling Farmers Income

With the aim of doubling farmers income by 2022, Smt. Sitharaman in her budget speech proposed to expand PM-KUSUM to 20 lakh farmers for setting up stand alone solar pumps and help another 15 lakh farmers solarise their grid connected pump sets. She further proposed to operationalize scheme to enable farmers to set up solar power generation capacity on their fallow/barren lands and to sell it to grid. Resource efficiency is the first step in doubling farmer’s income and keeping this in mind Smt. Sitharaman further stressed to encourage balanced use of all kinds of fertilizers and Zero Budget Natural Farming (ZBNF). She further proposed integration of negotiable warehousing receipts (e-NWR) and National Agricultural Market (e-NAM). 

“Integrated farming systems for rainfed areas shall be expanded. Multi-tier cropping, bee keeping, solar pumps, solar energy production in non cropping season will be added. The portal on “Jaivik kheti” – online national organic products market will also be strengthened” Smt. Sitharaman said.

To address concerns related to water stress in various parts of the country, Finance Minister said “our government is proposing comprehensive measures for one hundred water stressed districts”.

Storage and Logistics

To promote storage infrastructure and reduce wastage of food grains Smt. Sitharaman proposed creation of warehouses through viability gap funding on a PPP mode at block level. She also proposed warehouse building by Food Corporation of India (FCI) and Central Warehousing Corporation (CWC) on their land too. As a backward linkage, Smt. Sitharaman proposed village storage scheme to be run by Self Help Groups (SHG). “Women, SHG’s shall regain their position as Dhaanya Lakshmi said Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman.

To build a seamless national cold supply chain for perishables, inclusive of milk, meat, Smt. Sitharaman said, “Indian Railways will set up Kisan Rail-through PPP arrangements. There shall be refrigerated coaches in express and freight trains as well”. “To help improve value realization especially in North-East and tribal districts Krishi Udaan will be launched by the Ministry of Civil Aviation” added the Finance Minister.

Animal Husbandry

Recognizing the contribution of animal husbandry sector in farmer’s income, Smt. Sitharaman aimed to eliminate Foot and Mouth disease, brucellosis in cattles and peste des petits ruminants (PPR) in sheep and goat by 2025 and to increase coverage of artificial insemination from 30 percent to 70 percent. “we shall facilitate doubling of milk processing capacity from 53.5 million MT to 108 million MT by 2025” said Smt. Sitharaman.

Agriculture credit

Setting agriculture credit target of rupees 15 lakh crore for the year 2020-21. She stated that all eligible beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) will be covered under the Kisan Credit Card (KCC) scheme. 

Horticulture

On horticulture, she said “For better marketing and export, we propose supporting states which, adopting a cluster basis will focus on one product one district”

Blue Economy

Smt. Sitharaman proposed to put in place a framework for development, management and conservation of marine fishery resources and promotion of algae, sea weed and cage culture that will assist in raising fish production to 200 lakh tonnes by 2022-23.

Smt. Sitharaman in her budget speech said that “our government will involve youth in fishery extension through 3477 sagar mitras and 500 fish farmer producer organizations. We hope to raise fishery export to rupees 1 lakh crore by 2024-25”.

Following the spirit of Co-operative Federalism, Smt. Sitharaman also proposed to encourage those states governments who undertake implementation of Model Agricultural Land Leasing Act, 2016; Model Agricultural Produce and livestock Marketing (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2017 and Model Agricultural produce and Livestock Contract Farming and services (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2018.

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It is time to convert fintech initiatives into a fintech revolution: PM Modi
December 03, 2021
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“last year, in India, mobile payments exceeded ATM cash withdrawals for the first time”
“Transformational initiatives under Digital India have opened doors for innovative Fintech solutions to be applied in governance”
“Now it is time to convert these fintech initiatives into a fintech revolution. A revolution that helps to achieve financial empowerment of every single citizen of the country”
“Trust means that you need to ensure that the interests of people are secured. Fintech innovation will be incomplete without fintech security innovation”
“Our Digital Public Infrastructure solutions can improve the lives of citizens around the world”
“GIFT City is not merely a premise, it represents India. It represents India’s democratic values, demand, demography & diversity. It represents India’s openness to ideas, innovation & investment”
“Finance is the life blood of an economy and technology is its carrier . Both are equally important for achieving Antyodaya

Excellencies,

Distinguished colleagues,

My fellow citizens from the Tech and Finance world, Tens of thousands of Participants from over 70 countries,

Namaskar!

Friends,

I am delighted to inaugurate the first 'Infinity Forum' and welcome you all. 'Infinity Forum' represents the immense possibilities that Fintech has in India. It also shows the huge potential for India's Fintech to provide benefits to the entire world.

Friends,

The history of currency shows tremendous evolution. As humans evolved, so did the form of our transactions. From barter system to metals, from coins to notes, from cheques to cards, today we have reached here. Earlier developments used to take decades to spread across the world but not any more in this era of globalisation .Technology is bringing a big shift in the world of finance. Last year, in India, mobile payments exceeded ATM cash withdrawals for the first time. Fully digital banks, without any physical branch offices, are already a reality and may become common-place in less than a decade.

Friends,

India has proved to the world that it is second to none when it comes to adopting technology or innovating around it. Transformational initiatives under Digital India have opened doors for Fintech innovations to be applied in governance. Technology has also catalyzed financial inclusion. From less than 50% Indians having bank accounts in 2014, we have almost universalized it with 430 million Jan Dhan accounts in the last 7 years. So far, 690 million RuPay cards have been issued. RuPay cards clocked 1.3 billion transactions last year. UPI processed around 4.2 billion transactions in just last month.

Almost 300 million invoices are uploaded on the GST portal every month. More than 12 billion US dollars worth payment is done through the GST portal alone every month. Despite the pandemic, about 1.5 million railway tickets get booked online everyday. Last year, FASTag processed 1.3 billion seamless transactions. PM Svanidhi is enabling access to credit for small vendors across the country. e-RUPI has enabled targeted delivery of specified services without leakages; I can go on and on, but these are just a few examples of the scale & scope of Fintech in India.

Friends,

Financial inclusion is the driver of Fintech Revolution. Fintech is resting on 4 pillars; income, investments, insurance, and institutional credit. When income grows, investment becomes possible. Insurance coverage enables greater risk taking ability and investments. Institutional credit gives wings for expansion. And we have worked on each of these pillars. When all these factors come together, you suddenly find so many more people participating in the financial sector. The large base becomes the perfect springboard for Fintech innovations. Fintech industry in India is innovating to enhance access to finance and the formal credit system to every person in the country. Now it is time to convert these fintech initiatives into a fintech revolution. A revolution that helps to achieve financial empowerment of every single citizen of the country.

Friends,

As we see the widening reach of fintech, there are considerations that need attention. Fintech industry has achieved huge scale, and scale means people from all walks of life as customers. This fintech acceptability among the masses has a unique feature. That feature is trust. The common Indian has shown immense trust in our Fintech ecosystem by embracing digital payments and such technologies! This trust is a responsibility. Trust means that you need to ensure that the interests of people are secured. Fintech innovation will be incomplete without fintech security innovation.

Friends,

We believe in sharing our experiences and expertise with the world and learning from them as well. Our Digital Public Infrastructure solutions can improve the lives of people around the world. Tools like UPI and RuPay provide an unparalleled opportunity for every country. An opportunity to provide a low cost and reliable 'real time payment system' as well as a 'domestic card scheme' and 'fund remittance system'.

Friends,

GIFT City is not merely a premise, It represents the promise of India. It represents India's democratic values, demand, demography & diversity. It represents India's openness to ideas, innovation & investment. GIFT City is a gateway to the global fintech world. (IFSC) at GIFT City was born out of the vision that finance combined with technology would be an important part of India's future development. Our aim is to provide the best International Financial Services not just for India but for the World.

Friends,

Finance is the life blood of an economy and technology is its carrier. Both are equally important for achieving ''Antyodaya and Sarvodaya''. Our flagship Infinity Forum is part of our endeavor to bring together all key stakeholders of the global Fintech Industry to explore the limitless future of the industry. I remember the conversation I had with Mr Mike Bloomberg on this subject when we last met. And I thank the Bloomberg group for their support. Infinity forum is a forum of belief, belief in the spirit of innovation and the power of imagination. Belief in the energy of youth and their passion for change. Belief in making the world a better place. Let us together, explore and advance innovative ideas in Fintech to solve the most pressing issues emerging globally.

Thank You!