India’s Rice Diplomacy: Exporting 0.9 MT to Asian and African Nations

The Indian government has recently approved the export of approximately 0.9 million tonnes (MT) of broken rice to five countries. This decision was announced through the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT). The allocation of broken rice exports is as follows: Senegal will receive 0.5 MT, Mali will get 0.1 MT, Gambia is allocated 0.05 MT, Indonesia will have 0.2 MT, and Bhutan will receive 48,804 tonnes​​​​.

In 2022, India had imposed a ban on the export of broken rice to control local prices. However, it has been allowing shipments on a case-to-case basis to meet the food security requirements of various countries. In addition to broken rice, DGFT also approved the export of wheat (14,184 tonnes), flour (5,326 tonnes), and maida (15,226 tonnes) to Bhutan. Wheat exports were similarly banned in May 2022 but have been permitted on a case-by-case basis following requests from importing countries​​.

The approval for these exports comes after the requests from the respective countries to allow shipments of these grains. The South Asian nation banned exports of wheat and broken rice in 2022 to lower local prices. Following these requests, India agreed to allow broken rice exports to Indonesia, Senegal, and Gambia in the 2023/24 financial year starting April 1. Additionally, New Delhi also approved wheat exports to Nepal in the current financial year. Indonesian exporters, which were exporting grains to these countries, need to bid for the allocated quota of wheat and broken rice. Indonesia has also signed an agreement with the Indian government to potentially import 1 million tonnes of rice if the El Nino weather pattern affects domestic supply​​​​.

This move signifies India’s response to the global food security situation and its role as a major player in the international grain market. The decision to selectively lift the export ban underscores the balance India is trying to maintain between managing domestic supply and prices, and fulfilling international obligations and requests.



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