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India relaxes ban on wheat exports notification issued by DGFT

Business News. The Indian government on Tuesday announced some relaxation to its earlier notified ban on wheat exports issued by Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), Department of Commerce.

In a fresh notification, the Ministry of Commerce stated, “It has been decided that wherever wheat consignments have been handed over to Customs for examination and have been registered into their systems on or prior to 13.5.2022, such consignments would be allowed to be exported.”

Further, it also added that the government also allowed a wheat consignment headed for Egypt, which was already under loading at the Kandla port. This followed a request by the Egyptian government to permit the wheat cargo being loaded at the Kandla port.

On Saturday, India had banned wheat exports with immediate effect as part of measures to control rising domestic prices, according to official notification.

However, the export shipments for which irrevocable letters of credit (LoC) have been issued on or before the date of this notification will be allowed, it added.

It also clarified that wheat exports will be allowed on the basis of permission granted by the Government of India to other countries to meet their food security needs and based on the request of their governments.

The order served three main purposes: Ensure India’s food security and check inflation, it helps other countries facing food deficit, and it maintains India’s reliability as a supplier. The order also aimed to provide a clear direction to the wheat market to prevent hoarding of wheat supplies, government’s statement read.

The ban on exports also comes amid disruption in global wheat supplies due to the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine which are major exporters of the foodgrain.

India’s wheat exports surged to 7 million tonnes, worth USD 2.05 billion, in 2021-22 due to strong global demand. Of the total wheat exports, around 50 per cent of shipments were exported to Bangladesh in the last fiscal, according to the DGFT data.

The country exported around 963,000 tonnes of wheat this year against 130,000 tonnes in the same period last year.

Wheat production is pegged at a record 111.32 million tonnes in the 2021-22 crop year (July-June), as per the second advance estimate of the agriculture ministry.

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