The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, approved extension of Fisheries and Aquaculture Infrastructure Development Fund (FIDF) for another three years up to 2025-26 within the already approved fund size of Rs 7,522.48 crore and budgetary support of Rs 939.48 crore.
Fisheries sector in India
• India is the third largest fish producing country in the world after China and Indonesia, with around 8 per cent share in global fish production.
• India stands second in aquaculture production and is one of the top shrimp producing and exporting nations.
• The sector is considered as a sunrise sector and is poised to play a significant role in the Indian economy in near future.
• In the recent past, Indian fisheries has witnessed a paradigm shift from marine dominated fisheries to inland fisheries, with the latter emerging as a major contributor of fish production from 36 per cent in the mid-1980 to 70 per cent in the recent past.
• Within inland fisheries, a shift from capture to culture-based fisheries has paved the way for a sustained blue economy.
• The country has a coastline of 8,118 km, covering nine maritime states and four union territories.
• Fisheries and aquaculture are an important source of food, nutrition, employment and income in India. The sector provides livelihood to more than 20 million fishermen and fish farmers at the primary level and twice the number along the value chain.
• Overall, there are around 30,000 cooperatives in the fisheries sector.
• Fish being an affordable and rich source of animal protein, is one of the healthiest options to mitigate hunger and malnutrition.
What is the purpose of FIDF?
• During 2018-19, the Department of Fisheries created a dedicated fund namely Fisheries and Aquaculture Infrastructure Development Fund (FIDF) with a total funds size of Rs 7522.48 crore to address the infrastructure requirement for fisheries sector.
• It was launched with an aim to augment the country’s fish production to the level of about 20 million tonnes by 2022-23.
The objectives of FIDF include:
i) Creation and modernisation of capture & culture fisheries infrastructure.
ii) Creation of Marine Aquaculture Infrastructure.
iii) Creation and modernisation of Inland Fisheries Infrastructure.
iv) Reduce post-harvest losses and improve domestic marketing facilities through infrastructure support.
v) Bridge the resource gap and facilitate completion of ongoing infrastructure projects.
• FIDF provides concessional finance to the eligible entities (EEs), including state governments/Union Territories and state entities for development of identified fisheries infrastructure facilities through Nodal Loaning Entities (NLEs) namely:
i) National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD)
ii) National Cooperatives Development Corporation (NCDC)
iii) All scheduled Banks.
• The project under FIDF shall be eligible for loan up to 80 per cent of the estimated/actual project cost.
• The Department of Fisheries provides interest subvention up to 3 per cent per annum for providing the concessional finance by the NLEs at the interest rate not lower than 5 per cent per annum.
• Maximum repayment period is 12 years inclusive of moratorium of two years on repayment of principal.
• So far, proposals to the tune of Rs 7,649.58 crore have been received from various eligible entities (EEs) including state governments and Union Territories. These proposals have been received from a total of 21 states/UTs.
• The Department has approved the proposals to the tune of Rs 5,588.63 crore with project cost restricted for interest subvention of Rs 3,738.19 to various states/UTs including the proposals of private beneficiaries.
• The completed 27 projects created safe landing and berthing facilities for more than 8,100 fishing vessels, enhancement of fish landing of 1.09 lakh tonnes, benefiting around 3.3 lakh fishers and other stakeholders and creation of 2.5 lakh direct and indirect employment opportunities.
• Extension of FIDF will further intensify development of various fisheries infrastructures like fishing harbours, fish landing centers, ice plants, cold storage, fish transport facilities, integrated cold chain, modern fish markets, brood banks, hatcheries, aquaculture development, fish seed farms, state of art of fisheries training centres, fish processing units, fish feed mills/plants, cage culture in reservoir, disease diagnostic laboratories, mariculture and aquatic quarantine facilities.