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Government Vigilant on Rice Market Dynamics, Eyes Global Trade Opportunities


Rice export

In a recent parliamentary session, Minister of State for Commerce and Industry, Anupriya Patel, informed the Lok Sabha that the Indian government is closely monitoring the rice situation in both domestic and international markets on a weekly basis. The proactive approach aims to allow the government to respond swiftly to market dynamics and capitalize on global trade opportunities when favorable conditions arise.


The decision to ban the export of broken and non-basmati white rice is part of a broader strategy to mitigate uncertainties surrounding rice production. Factors such as the geopolitical scenario, El Nino sentiments, and extreme climatic conditions in India and other rice-producing countries have prompted the government to take precautionary measures. The export restrictions are designed to stabilize domestic prices and ensure an adequate supply of rice in the Indian market.


"The government is closely monitoring the rice scenario in the domestic market as well as in international forums on a weekly basis, and the government can increase the percentage share in global rice trade when favorable conditions arise," stated Minister Anupriya Patel.

India has been a major player in global rice trade, holding the title of the largest rice-exporting country from 2018 to 2022. In 2022, India exported 22.24 million tonnes of rice, accounting for 40.63% of the world's rice exports. The ongoing monitoring of the rice market reflects the government's commitment to maintaining its prominent position in global trade.


As part of the government's measures, the export of broken rice has been prohibited since September 2022, and non-basmati white rice exports have been restricted since July 2023. However, exports of basmati and parboiled non-basmati rice continue.

Responding to questions regarding agriculture exports, Minister Patel acknowledged a decline of 11.6% during April-September 2023 compared to the same period the previous year. The decline was attributed to both international price fluctuations and restrictions on the export of essential food products like wheat, non-basmati rice, sugar, and onions, aimed at ensuring domestic food security.


On the subject of free trade agreements (FTAs), Patel revealed that India has signed 13 trade pacts with its trading partners. The country is currently engaged in negotiations for FTAs with various nations, including the UK, the European Union, Peru, Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein, Switzerland (EFTA countries), Sri Lanka, and Oman.


The government's proactive stance on monitoring and responding to rice market dynamics underscores its commitment to ensuring stability in domestic prices, securing food availability, and maximizing opportunities in the global trade arena.

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