The business community of South Punjab has hailed a relief package of over Rs 341 billion for farmers announced by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif describing it a landmark decision. President of Multan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) Mian Iqbal Hassan was optimistic that this package would change the destiny of the small farmers, peasants and agriculturists if it was implemented in letter and in spirit.
Expressing his views on the relief package for farmers, Mian Iqbal Hassan said that it was a good decision to give cash assistance of Rs 40 billion to give Rs 5,000 per acre cash support for rice farmers as well as to cotton growers. He said that reduction in prices of commodities and increase in the prices of agriculture inputs has raised the cost of production. The MCCI chief said that Prime Minister Mian Nawaz Sharif has allocated fund of Rs 20 billion for reduction in prices of fertilisers, as a result of which the cost of phosphate and potassium fertilisers per sack is being cut by at least Rs 500. To save the farmers from financial losses in case of flood, rains, unfair weather, earthquake and other calamities, the Government has decided to pay insurance premium of some 700,000 farmers and the government has allocated Rs 2.5 billion for this purpose. This facility will benefit some 700,000 farmers in case their fields are damaged, he said.