India allows exports of 3.5 lakh tons of broken rice to Gambia, Senegal

The government has approved the export of 3.5 lakh tons (lt) of broken rice to The Gambia and Senegal as a special consideration as the shipment of this variety was banned on September 8, 2022.

The Ministry of Commerce has approved the export of 1,000 tons of broken rice to The Gambia and 2.5,000 tons to Senegal, according to a note from the Ministry of Finance to the Chief Commissioners of Customs in Ahmedabad, Chennai, Vizag, Nagpur and Mumbai.

In addition, the ministry has approved shipments of 9,990 tons of broken rice to Djibouti, Ethiopia. Shipping is done by Ruby Overseas based in Chennai.

In the case of Gambia, from the total amount approved for export, the Center has approved applications for export of broken rice from Royal Mirage Consultant (5,000 tons), Sarala Food Pvt Ltd (12,500 tons) and Laxmi Group of Industries Pvt Ltd (2,000 tons) .

trading upset

For Senegal, the Ministry has released 1.12.500 tons of the total 2.5 lakh tons, with Sarala Foods, Sri Chitra Exports, Manasa Quality Enterprises Ltd, Pattabhi Agro Foods Pvt Ltd and CLRK Industries Pvt Ltd each being allowed to ship 22,500 tons.

Some traders are upset about the broken rice export permit and wonder why the center allows shipments to these countries when it is not allowed to other destinations.

“What is the government’s obligation to the countries? Why relax a blanket ban imposed on food security grounds?” asked a Delhi-based trader.

However, a trade analyst said exports to Gambia, Senegal and Djibouti have been approved by the trade ministry at the request of the foreign ministry.

Permissions for strategic reasons

“The exports are being allowed for strategic reasons and because the State Department is involved,” said the analyst, who asked not to be named.

Citing the center’s announcements as it bans wheat exports and restricts rice shipments, the analyst said India is clear it will meet the food needs of “vulnerable countries”.

“The State Department would have considered various reasons before approaching the Department of Commerce,” he said.

The center banned the export of broken rice and imposed a 20 percent tariff on shipments of white and brown rice after weak monsoons hit kharif paddy production in key rice-growing areas in the eastern parts.

In the kharif season, rice production was estimated lower at 108.07 million tons (mt) in 2022 compared to 111 mt in 2021. Rabi production has made up for the loss, however, as the Ministry of Agriculture estimates it at 22.76 mt a year versus 18.47 mt a year earlier.

For the current crop year through June, the Ministry of Agriculture has estimated rice production at a record 130.84 million tons, up from 129.47 million tons last crop year.

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