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Govt allows non-basmati rice exports to 5 African countries

08 December 2023

The government allowed export of non-basmati rice to Comoros, Madagascar, Equatorial Guinea, Kenya and Egypt through National Cooperatives Exports

New Delhi: The government on Thursday allowed the export of essential food items to five African nations overriding an existing ban. The export curbs on food grains such as rice and wheat have affected food availability in strategic partner countries.

The government allowed export of 240,000 tonnes of non-basmati rice to Comoros, Madagascar, Equatorial Guinea, Kenya and Egypt through the National Cooperatives Exports Limited (NCEL), a notification by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) said.

According to the order, Comoros is to get 20,000 tonnes of non-basmati rice, Madagascar 50,000 tonnes, Equatorial Guinea 10,000 tonnes, Kenya 100,000 tonnes and Egypt 60,000 tonnes.

India has been supplying rice to its strategic partners in Asia and Africa since the export ban was imposed on broken variety and non-basmati white rice in September 2022 and July 2023, respectively. The export ban is meant to keep prices in check.

In recent months the government has also cleared exports of 2.77 million tonnes (mt) of non-basmati white rice to 14 key Asian and African nations, including Singapore, Nepal, Malaysia and the Philippines. In addition to white rice, India allowed export of 14,184 tonnes wheat, 5,326 tonnes of atta, 15,226 tonnes of maida and 48,804 tonnes of broken rice to Bhutan on 30 November. On the same day, export of broken rice was allowed to Mali (100,000 tonnes), Senegal (500,000 tonnes), Gambia (50,000 tonnes), and Indonesia (200,000 tonnes). India imposed a ban on wheat and its products such as atta, suji (semolina) and maida in May 2022 and on broken rice in September last year.

Amid higher inflationary pressure primarily due to skyrocketing food prices, the government in July this year banned exports of non-basmati white rice, imposed a 20% export duty on parboiled rice and set a minimum export price of $1,200 per tonne for basmati rice in August this year.

Source : livemint