Contrary to concerns raised by SAD MP Harsmirat Kaur Badal, Union Minister of State of Commerce and Industry Anupriya Patel has said the imposition of the minimum export price (MEP) on basmati rice has had no adverse impact on the country’s basmati export.
Responding to a question by Harsmirat regarding the potential negative effects of capping the MEP at $1,200 per MT (now reduced to $950) on Punjab farmers’ income, Patel emphasised that the MEP was not introduced to restrict basmati export.
She clarified that the price cap was to address concerns regarding the illegal export of non-basmati white rice.
Reports indicated that non-basmati white rice, prohibited for export from July 20, was being unlawfully exported. In response to these challenges, on August 26, the government directed the Agriculture and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) to register basmati export contracts only at a value of $1,200 per MT and above. Following extensive consultations with stakeholders, the government decided to reduce the base price for contract registration by APEDA to $950 per MT, effective from October 26.
Patel emphasised that the export restrictions did not hinder basmati’s global trade. In fact, the minister highlighted that India’s basmati exports reached $2,958.52 million, surpassing last year’s figure of $2,544.53 million.
This article has been republished from The Tribune.