Drabu for declaring all lending in JK as priority sector lending

Minister for Finance, Dr Haseeb A Drabu today emphasized the need for providing incentives for entrepreneurship promotion to revive the flood ravaged state economy.
Drabu for declaring all lending in JK as priority sector lending

Minister for Finance, Dr Haseeb A Drabu today emphasized the need for providing incentives for entrepreneurship promotion to revive the flood ravaged state economy.

The Minister was speaking at an interactive programme organized for the Governor of Reserve Bank of India, Dr. Raghuram Rajan.

Drabu while pitching for declaring all lending for one year in J&K as the priority sector lending, suggested that financial debt relief in the form of waivers and write offs should qualify as CSR expenditure. He said the (union) Ministry of Finance be requested to subsidize rate of interest on all rehabilitation and reconstruction lending by Commercial Banks in the state.

"Specific relief package be given for existing KCC barrows," Drabu suggested, saying that one time waiver of Rs One lakh on KCC borrowings would benefit 8 lakh farmer families.

He said all farm lending be converted into KCC lending and same be done for ACC lending. The Minister said that there was a need to move away from asset-based or financial statement-based lending and called for putting in place a mechanism by which banks could lower the rate of interest on the loans extended for developmental activities in the State so that the pace of development in state could be accelerated.

To address the post-flood challenges in the state, Drabu suggested a 5-R programme namely restoration of livelihoods, reconstruction of public infrastructure, revival of business, rebuilding of flood management systems and redeveloping J&K as the sustainable state.

The Governor, Reserve Bank of India, Dr. Raghuram Rajan while interacting with the officers highlighted the core areas including tourism which he said needed special focus and attention so that it could be promoted in a big way and the economy of the State got the required fillip.

He also called for digitization of the land record which he said would expand the credit flow substantially.

Rajan said, "Many good small industries got affected due to floods and focus should be on these healthy sick industries rather than focusing on unhealthy sick industries." He said agricultural infrastructure and marketing also needed to be strengthened to boost the local economy. "All the suggestions and requests put forth by the government would be explored," Rajan said. Financial Commissioner, Industries and Commerce, Khurshid Ahmed Ganai also spoke on the occasion and spelled out the measures needed to be taken for putting the industrial scenario of the flood hit valley and other parts of Jammu division back on track by providing the necessary incentives.

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