India’s rice exports rise on global crunch

The decline in rice crop yields in Thailand and Vietnam and their increased costs of production may turn out to be a bonanza for India’s rice exports in this fiscal year, trade sources said. India is exporting rice at around $360 a tonne to key markets at present while Thailand and Vietnam are offering the grain at around $ 420 a tonne. The gap, according to the sources, is expected to expand in the coming months. Also, prospects of a reasonably strong Kharif crop could enable Indian exporters to fetch higher realizations. 

India has been the world’s largest rice exporter in the last decade export earnings stood at $ 8.8 billion in 2020-21 and $9.6 billion in 2021-22. According to commerce ministry data, India’s value of rice exports rose by 12% to $ 2.6 billion in the first quarter of the current fiscal. “We will sustain the momentum in rice exports in the current fiscal through shipment of quality rice,” M Angamuthu, Chairman, Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) said.

The Food Corporation of India (FCI) as of July 1, 2022, had rice stocks of more than 31.7 MT against the cushion norm of 13.54 mt. However, this stock excludes 15 mt of rice yet to be received from the millers by FCI. As per DGCIS data, India exported rice to over 150 countries in 2021-22. “It indicates the diversification of India’s rice export over the years,” a commerce ministry official said.

Out of 21 MT of rice shipment in FY22, India exported more than 17 MT of non-basmati rice and the rest of the volume was aromatic and long grain Basmati rice. In terms of volume, Bangladesh, China, Benin, and Nepal are five major export nations of rice. As per third advance estimates for the 2021-22 crop year (July-June), the rice production is estimated at a record 129.66 mt against the last five years’ average production of 116 mt.

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