Union Cabinet Approves Subsidies for Fertilisers

New Delhi: The Union Cabinet on Thursday approved several key decisions aimed at bolstering various sectors. Among the key announcements are initiatives such as the rooftop solar scheme, the establishment of semiconductor plants, and subsidies for fertilisers.

Addressing the media following the Cabinet meeting, minister of information and broadcasting, Anurag Thakur, revealed that the government has approved the implementation of the 'PM-Surya Ghar: Mufti Bijli Yojna' rooftop solar scheme, allocating over Rs.75,000 crore for its execution. This scheme aims to provide substantial subsidies of up to Rs.78,000 for solar plant installations and offer 300 units of free power to approximately one crore households.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi officially launched the scheme on February 13, 2024, outlining its provisions, including a Central financial assistance covering 60 per cent of system costs for 2 kW systems and 40 per cent for systems ranging between 2 kW to 3 kW, with a cap set at 3 kW.

The scheme also facilitates collateral-free, low-interest loans at approximately 7 per cent for residential rooftop solar installations up to 3 kW. Additionally, it proposes the development of model solar villages in each district to serve as exemplars for rural areas' adoption of rooftop solar technology.

The implementation of this scheme is expected to add 30 GW of solar capacity through rooftop solar installations in residential sectors, generating 1,000 BUs of electricity while significantly reducing CO2 emissions by 720 million tonnes over the systems' 25-year lifetime. Further, it is estimated to create around 17 lakh direct jobs across various sectors.

In addition to the rooftop solar initiative, the Cabinet has also approved the establishment of three semiconductor units in Gujarat and Assam, attracting a combined investment of approximately Rs.1.26 lakh crore. Telecom minister Ashwini Vaishnaw announced that construction on all three units is slated to commence within the next 100 days.

Tata Electronics Private Limited will collaborate with Powerchip Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp (PSMC), Taiwan, to set up a semiconductor fab in Dholera, Gujarat, with an investment of Rs.91,000 crore. Tata Semiconductor Assembly and Test Pvt Ltd will establish another semiconductor unit in Morigaon, Assam, investing Rs.27,000 crore.

Additionally, CG Power, in partnership with Renesas Electronics Corporation, Japan, and Stars Microelectronics, Thailand, will establish a semiconductor unit in Sanand, Gujarat, with an investment of Rs.7,600 crore.

Further, the government has announced a substantial subsidy of Rs.24,420 crore on Phosphatic and Potassic (P&K) fertilisers for the upcoming kharif season, ensuring the stability of retail prices for key soil nutrients such as Di-ammonium Phosphate (DAP). Minister Thakur specified that the subsidy rates for nitrogen, phosphatic, potassic, and sulphur fertilisers have been maintained or increased for the 2024 kharif season, ensuring the availability of DAP at Rs.1,350 per bag (50 kg).

These decisions, spanning multiple sectors, underscore the government's commitment to bolstering key industries and supporting agricultural initiatives ahead of the upcoming elections.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle )
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