First urea consignment reaches Birgunj by rail

- SHANKAR ACHARYA, PARSA

Apr 3, 2017-

State-owned fertilizer supplier Agriculture Inputs Company (AIC) has received the first consignment of urea provided by India under a government-to-government deal. The arrival of the nutrient will be a big relief to farmers who have been suffering from intermittent shortages of farm inputs. 

On Friday, the AIC received 2,500 tonnes of urea by rail at Sirsiya Dry Port in Birgunj. Last February, India had agreed to provide 30,000 tonnes of urea following Nepal’s request to prevent a shortage during the spring planting season. Ajay Kumar Srivastava, regional chief of AIC, said the urea shipment had been stored in the warehouse of a sugar mill. 

“It will be dispatched to Bharatpur, Hetauda and Nawalparasi, among other places, from Sunday.” 

He said that the arrival of urea would be a big relief to farmers who have planted spring paddy and maize. 

“We are expecting to receive the remaining consignment soon.” Farmers require 

61,000 tonnes of urea to nourish their spring crops during the mid-March to mid-June season. 

The country has only 5,653 tonnes of urea in stock currently, 4,213 tonnes with AIC and the rest with Salt Trading Corporation. 

The urea was imported from Brahmaputra Valley Fertilizer Corporation in Assam, India. The Indian government has provided the fertilizer at the import parity price.

In the beginning of February, the government had formally requested the Indian Ministry of External Affairs to provide 30,000 tonnes of urea in order to prevent a possible shortage of the farm input.

Under a Nepal-India treaty signed in 2009, India has agreed to sell 100,000 tonnes of chemical fertilizers (60,000 tonnes of urea and 40,000 tonnes of DAP) to Nepal 

annually at the import parity price to avoid procedural hassles.

It normally takes six months to procure chemical fertilizers following a global tender call under the Public Procurement Act.

AIC faced a deficit of urea as UAE-based Commodities Trading Company, which had bagged the contract to supply 25,000 tonnes of fertilizer, reneged on the deal after prices jumped $25 per tonne in the global market.

Published: 03-04-2017 08:41

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