As El Nino approaches, India will limit sugar exports until H1 2024.

Until at least the first half of the following season, India is not considering allowing sugar exports since the government is concerned the El Nino weather pattern will restrict rainfall and hurt production, government sources said on Monday. The amount of sweetener mills can export is typically decided by India, the second-largest exporter of sugar in the world, prior to the beginning of the new marketing year on October 1. The Indian cargo delays may help keep sugar prices in the global market at multi-year highs.

The industry estimated this year’s output at 36 million tonnes at the start of the current sugar season, which has now been reduced to 32.8 million tonnes. India permitted exports of 6.1 million tonnes for this season due to the lesser yield. India is not currently exporting sugar because the quota has been used up.

Even if India decides to permit exports later in the 2023–2024 season, New Delhi might only permit up to 4 million tonnes, according to the officials. Prior to several state elections in 2023 and a national election in the middle of 2024, the government is anxious to keep a lid on food costs. The nation’s exports reached an all-time high of over 11 million tonnes in 2021–2022.

A Mumbai-based dealer with a worldwide trade business claimed that since global prices are currently trading close to 11-year highs, the globe urgently needs more Indian sugar. According to a Mumbai-based dealer with a worldwide trade business, “the delay in Indian exports will further raise prices and will allow Brazilian sellers to demand even higher prices.”

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