KARACHI: Tractor sales by Fiat and Massey Ferguson plunged to 3,493 units during the first two months of this fiscal year as compared to 5,710 units in the same period last year.
Production of farm machinery, however, slightly went up to 5,153 units during the July-Aug period against 5,089 units in the same months last year.
Senior Executive Director of Millat Tractors Sohail Bashir Rana told Dawn that one of the reasons of sliding sales was the delay in the implementation of subsidised tractor schemes in Punjab and Sindh.
Farmers are anxiously waiting for the execution of the tractor schemes announced by the Sindh and Punjab governments.
The company, he said, had reminded the Punjab government seeking practical implementation of the subsidised tractor scheme. The officials in the Punjab government say that the scheme is still intact.
Tractor industry, he said, usually faces slowdown in sales from July to September every year. Brisk sales is witnessed during harvesting and sowing season of various crops.
Had the scheme been implemented, there would have been no slow sales between July and September, he added.
He said that they had maintained normal production to ensure timely delivery in case the provincial governments implement the scheme. He said September sales would also remain laggard owing to slow response from farmers.
Sources said Sindh and Punjab governments are yet to give any timeline for the launch of the schemes.
They said that usually Rs200,000 to Rs300,000 per tractor subsidy may be offered to farmers as per previous practice.
Punjab is considering offering subsidy on 20,000 tractors while Sindh plans subsidy on 27,000 tractors, sources said.
Sources said that the tractor scheme is being delayed to facilitate a new Belarus state-owned company. Import of tractors from Belarus would hit the local industry and its vendors.
Published in Dawn, September 20th, 2015