India ban on grain export till April

New Delhi, August 23:

India will extend the ban on export of rice, wheat and pulses till April 2009 to keep staple food grain prices under control. The decision came at a cabinet meeting on Thursday chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

“Ban on export of paddy, wheat and pulses till April 30 r is expected to help tackle the problem of rising prices and improve availability of these commodities,” information and broadcasting minister Priyaranjan Dasmunshi said.

To rein in the over 12 per cent inflation, the Cabinet Committee on Prices (CCP) had in March banned export of non-basmati rice and increased minimum export price (MEP) for basmati rice to $1,200 per tonne.

The government has also banned the export of edible oils with effect from March 17 for a year. Export of maize has been banned till October 15.

India has a target to achieve production of 129 million tonnes of rice by 2011-12 at a growth rate of 3.7 per cent. India’s food grain production was estimated at 230.67 million tonnes in 2007-08.

As per fourth Advance Estimates of Crop Production for 2007-08, food production rose 13.39 million tonnes to 230.67 million tonnes, as compared to 217.28 million tonnes in 2006-07.

The production of rice was 96.43 million tonnes, wheat 78.40 million tonnes, coarse cereals 40.73 million tonnes, maize 19.31 million tonnes, pulses 15.11 million tonnes, and that of oilseeds stood at 28.82 million tonnes.