New Delhi, March 10: Union Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister Radha Mohan Singh on Wednesday said that “As there was no uniformity in pricing of Bt cotton seeds across the country, the central government has recently intervened and issued a Cotton Seed Price (Control) Order, 2015, to fix a uniform price of Bt cotton seed across the states in the country for the benefit of farmers".
The Agriculture & Farmers Welfare Minister said that both the public and private sectors have a role in the supply of quality seeds, including Bt cotton, to farmers. The licensing of Bt cotton seeds by Mahyco Monsanto to 50 companies is an example of the private sector's role in the production and supply of such seeds.
Singh said that "In order to safeguard the interests of the farming community, this department issued the Cotton Seed Price (Control) Order, 2015, under section 3 of the Essential Commodities Act, 1955, to regulate Bt cotton seed prices. "Some state governments had also passed legislations to ensure supply of Bt cotton seeds to farmers," Singh added.
Agriculture & Farmers Welfare Minister also said that “based on the representations, this department also made a reference to the Competition Commission of India for investigation of dominance of MMBL and abuse of monopoly in Bt cotton technology so as to ensure competition in the market.
Singh said that as per the order, a nine-member committee was set up to recommend the maximum sale price of Bt cotton seeds after taking into consideration the seed value, licence fees including one-time and recurring royalty (trait value), trade margins and other taxes and government declared the maximum sale price of Bt. cotton seed packets9450grams of Bt. Cotton plus 120 grams refugia) for the financial year 2016-17 for the whole of India.