New Delhi: India said on Saturday it will maintain the floor price for basmati rice exports until further notice, according to a government order, as the world’s biggest exporter continues to curb overseas shipments of the grain.
India imposed a $1,200 per ton minimum export price (MEP) on basmati rice shipments in August to calm local prices ahead of key state elections.
A government order on Saturday said it would maintain the MEP, initially in place until Sunday, until further notice.
The South Asian country in July banned exports of non-basmati white rice and on Friday imposed a 20% duty on exports of parboiled rice.
The MEP aims to help authorities ensure that non-basmati rice is not exported as basmati rice.
The finance ministry through a notification extended the duty till March 31, 2024.
With these curbs, India has now imposed restrictions on all varieties on non-basmati rice.
Non-basmati white rice constitutes about 25 per cent of the total rice exported from the country.
In July, the government banned export of non-basmati white rice to boost domestic supply and keep retail prices under check during the upcoming festive season.
In September last year, exports of broken rice were prohibited. In the April-June period this fiscal, about 15.54 lakh tonnes of non-basmati white rice was exported against only 11.55 lakh tonnes in the year-ago period.
The ban on exports of non-basmati white rice was imposed due to the rise in prices of the foodgrain and higher exports.
The annual retail or consumer price inflation was at a three-month low of 5.02 per cent in September. India’s total exports of basmati rice stood at USD 4.8 billion in 2022-23, while in volume terms it was at 45.6 lakh tonnes.
Exports of non-basmati stood at USD 6.36 billion in the last fiscal. In volume terms, it was 177.9 lakh tonnes.
India’s rice production is estimated to have risen to 135.54 million tonnes in the 2022-23 crop year (July-June) from 129.47 million tonnes in the previous year, according to the agriculture ministry data.