India: Kolkata Government Subsidizes Inter-state Potato Trade Transport and Export
Given that the Indian state of Kolkata has its cold storage stocked with massive quantities of potatoes due to the 2021 bumper crop, the local Government decided to offer transport subsidies for inter-state trade and export to neighboring countries like Bangladesh, Nepal, and Bhutan.
According to Millennium Post, the Kolkata Government will offer a subsidy of Rs100 per quintal for export to other states by railways or by ship (through Kolkata port) to foreign countries. The subvention for transportation in trucks via roadways will be Rs50 per quintal. The subsidy provided for sending potatoes to the neighboring countries like Bangladesh, Nepal, and Bhutan via Railways and roads will be Rs100 and Rs50 per quintal respectively.
Sources in Kolkata’s Agricultural Marketing department said that about 3,2m tons of potatoes are preserved in cold storage. The permission for keeping the spuds in cold storage is granted until October. There have been earlier instances when the state government has allowed a month’s extension for the storage. But, this time even if the extension is allowed it will be difficult for people to utilize the remaining quantity of potatoes.
Beginning in August, the State Government had increased the allocation of potatoes up to 2 kg in the midday meal allowance for every student. That move eased some of the pressure from cold storage stocks. The department has also come up with additional guidelines for a subsidy of road transport for inter-state movement and shipment of potatoes to overseas markets. The vehicles carrying potatoes should have a GPS tracking system.