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Reforming agricultural markets from above: Problems in and implications of ‘APMC bypass’ and ‘contract farming’ Acts

Speaker: Prof. Sukhpal Singh


Agricultural market reforms have been on the agenda of both UPA and NDA governments and were attempted in bits and pieces at the state level since 2003. Until now, it was being attempted more thru cajoling and persuasion of the states as it is a state subject. But the present NDA government concluded that states could not be pushed beyond a point. Therefore, it took the ordinance route, on this state domain, and now these two (commonly known as APMC Bypass and Contract Farming) are Acts. The stated purpose of these reforms (Acts) is to create one nation-one market and provide the choice to farmers for selling their produce for better price discovery besides attracting private investment in the agricultural markets.  But the Acts have attracted serious opposition from farmer unions and many political parties across states. The public discussions on the Acts have created many misperceptions in the presence of many misconceptions about emerging agribusiness practices globally, and India. In this context, this webinar would discuss and examine major aspects of the two new union Acts which deal with the state subject of regulation of agricultural produce markets.


Bio of Speaker:

Prof.Sukhpal Singh is a Professor, Centre for Management in Agriculture (CMA), Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Ahmedabad, Gujarat, Former Director-General, Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development (CRRID) Chandigarh, and Former Professor and Head, Agricultural Economics Research Unit (AERU), Institute of Economic Growth (IEG), New Delhi.

He has been conferred the title of the Fellow of the Indian Society of Agricultural Economics for his contributions to the discipline and the Society in 2018. He is a founding co-editor, Millennial Asia-an intl. journal of Asian studies.

He has 12 books, the latest being: Institutional innovations in the delivery of farm services in India (2018, Springer), and more than 140 research papers in international/national journals/edited books. He is on the boards of many non-profits working in the Agri and rural space. He was a visiting fellow at the IDS, Sussex (the UK), Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok (Thailand), the University of Manchester (The UK); and the Copenhagen Business School (Denmark), and a member of various committees/working groups of the Planning Commission of India/NITI Aayog, the National Development Council, the Food Safety Standards Authority of India, and the EC of the Mission on Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH). He was a member of the standing working group on Agri and allied sectors of Chhattisgarh State Planning Commission, and the Committee for FPO policy for Punjab and Committee on MSP and other mechanisms for farmers in Chhattisgarh.

His research interests lie in small producer and worker livelihoods and collectivization of such stakeholders in the context of agribusiness value chains and the deregulation of agricultural markets in India and the developing world.

Event Date: 
Tuesday, 13 October 2020 - 5:30pm to 7:00pm