KATHMANDU, May 21: Failure to get chemical fertilizers on time even after the onset of the monsoon season is one of the biggest concerns of farmers in the country.
The concern over lack of fertilizers is not a new issue but a recurring problem for a long time. Farmers, especially those who have been applying chemical fertilizers on paddy and wheat, have been facing this problem as the main reason behind the steady decline in the agriculture production is failure to get fertilizer on time.
According to Spokesperson Prakash Kumar Sanjel at the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock, a certain amount of fertilizers out of the 150,000 metric tons procured from India will be shipped to Nepal in 15 days after the company to company negotiations are complete.
Sanjel said that the government has also called for a global tender to procure around 140,000 metric tons of fertilizers. “Of the global tender invited for 142,000 metric tons of fertilizers, 25,000 metric tons of fertilizer has already arrived at the Kolkata port. Of the total 50,000 metric tons has been already dispatched on the first lot. We have received unofficial information that the remaining amount of fertilizers being received through global tender will reach the port within 10 days,” Sanjel told Republica.
Earlier, the governments of Nepal and India signed a G2G (Government to Government) in March to procure one million metric tons of fertilizer from India for five years as the supply of fertilizers would take time through a global tender.
As per the agreement, India will provide 150,000 metric tons of chemical fertilizers in the current fiscal year, 170,000 tons in FY 2022/23, 195,000 tons in 2023/24, 210,000 in 2024/25 and 210,000 in 2025/26.
Stating that the fertilizers procured from the G2G agreement will be prioritized for the rice plantation season, Sanjel shared that the fertilizers from global tender will be prioritized for use in the wheat plantation season.
He said that the ministry has suggested the Finance Ministry to ensure an adequate budget to grow the country’s agriculture production, promote hybrid seeds, supply of fertilizers on time and develop infrastructures related to agro markets and warehouses.
The issue of this long-standing problem of the farmers has now entered federal parliament. Most of the lawmakers who spoke in the parliament during the discussion on the principles and priorities of the Appropriation Bill before bringing the budget have raised the issue whether the fertilizer can be made available to farmers on time. The lawmakers drew the attention of the government to provide timely fertilizer to the farmers.