Banks Earmark Lower Credit for UT's Agri Sector
PUDUCHERRY: The loans earmarked for the agricultural sector for the year 2014-15 have decreased by three per cent as compared to the previous year, as per the Annual Credit Plan (ACP) report released by B Rajkumar, executive director, Indian Bank, during the State-level Bankers Committee meeting a few days back.
But, the credit for the non-farm and service sectors has been increased by one per cent and two per cent respectively.
From 45 per cent in 2013-2014, the agricultural credit has been lowered to 42 p er cent in 2014-2015, while non-farm sector credit has been increased from 17 per cent in the previous year to 18 per cent in the current year, while the service sector credit has been hiked from 38 per cent to 40 per cent.
The banks have earmarked `767 crore for the agriculture sector this year as compared to the target of `770 crore last year.
Citing the reason for the decline, zonal manager of Indian Bank and convenor of the State-level Bankers Committee S Parthasarathy told Express, “Due to shrinking cultivable area, the banks have decided to reduce the credit in the current year, in tune with the potential linked credit plan of NABARD.”
He said the total cultivable area had come down from 20,647 hectares in 2005-2006 to 18,734 hectares in 2010-2011 and now to 16,131 hectares in 2013-2014, according to data provided to NABARD by the government.
Puducherry government has further proposed to convert around 77 hectares of agricultural land located in villages into residential plots to meet the growing needs of housing, a notification issued by Town and Country Planning Department in February last said.
However, the overall credit disbursement for the UT by the banks has exceeded the target fixed under ACP in 2013-2014. In 2013-2014, the banks had disbursed `1,728 crore credit, which is `10.27 crore higher than targeted `1,717.73 crore. In the agricultural sector also, there has been an increase of `9 crore with an actual disbursement of `779 crore last year as compared to the targeted `770 crore.
In the non-farm sector as well as the service sectors, the loan went up by `1 crore each. The banks have disbursed `299 crore as compared to `298 crore earmarked for the non-farm sector in 2013-2014. In the current year, banks have earmarked `331.05 crore under the non- farm sector.
Similarly for service sector, `650 crore was disbursed last year as compared to the set target of `649 crore.