New Delhi: Amid the increase in demand of sugar following a global shortage, the Indian government has taken a precautionary step by putting a cap on the export of sugar to 100 lakh metric tonnes (LMT). The decision has been taken to make prices of sugar stable, said Sudhanshu Pandey, Secretary, Department of Food and Public Distribution.
Pandey, while addressing a press conference here, said, ‘The government wants to ensure enough sugar stock availability in India, especially during sugar lean season of October and November which is the festival season in India. The global situation reflects a shortage of sugar, this may trigger the demand globally and so as to safeguard domestic availability and interests the step has been taken by the government’.
The government of India on late Tuesday issued an order to maintain domestic availability and price stability of sugar in the country during sugar season 2021-22 (October-September). Central government to regulate sugar exports w.e.f June 1, 2022, till further orders. the government will allow sugar exports up to 100 LMT. ‘Our first priority is to ensure sufficient availability of sugar for consumption at a reasonable rate, thereafter maximum sugar to be diverted to ethanol. Closing stocks should be approximately 60 LMT if any are to be exported. This Year India has produced 355 LMT of sugar, the highest in the world. India is the second-largest exporter of sugar. Total export should be about 100 LMT in the current sugar season 2021-22’, he said.
‘Current exports of 90 LMT have been contracted of which 82 have already been lifted, remaining 10 LMT can be exported. Average monthly consumption in India is around 23 LMT, and sufficient domestic stock available is around 62 LMT. The average retail price of sugar in India is around Rs 37-44/kg. Sugar exports are to be at an all-time high, despite a cap on exports. Export has gone from 0.47 LMT to 100 LMT in the last five years which is more than 200 times’, Pandey added.
Secretary said that the Industry indicates that sugar exports would hardly reach a 100 LMT figure, but still the government imposed a cap on exports as a Precautionary measure. ‘From June 1, all mills will apply to DoFPD for exports. For monitoring of exports, sugar mills will submit online information about dispatches for export. The data will provide the basis for determining the quantity for issuance of Export Release Orders. No approvals required for exports upto 31 May 2022’, he said. ‘DoFPD will release Export Release Orders (EROs) on receiving applications from sugar mills and exporters. Procedure for application of ERO by Sugar Mills and Exporters have been issued on 24.05.2022 by the Directorate of Sugar, DoFPD. Sugar mills will apply for ERO for dispatch of sugar from mills for export. Exporters will apply for the export of sugar out of the country. Both need to apply online through National Single Window System (NSWS)’, Pandey added.