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Par-boiled rice exports on the rise
Busines Line, December 2, 2004
With the Government yet to decide on the scheme to promote foodgrain exports, exporters are finding buyers for par-boiled rice only.

While around 80,000 tonnes have been sent to Nigeria and Somalia, countries such as Djibouti and Senegal have bought small quantities totalling 20,000 tonnes, Indian trade sources said.

The 5 per cent sortex of IR5 has been sold at $272-$275 a tonne, while that of IR64 at $262-$263, they said.

"In fact, we have a niche market in West and North Africa," they said.

Prices for par-boiled are higher that last year since the rates in Thailand are up on a Government intervention programme.

Besides this, exports are taking place to West Asian destinations also. Last week, about 30,000 tonnes were shipped to Damman in Saudi Arabia.

"We have to be satisfied with whatever is happening now. We don't see the Government doing anything on the export front since the priority is to build up stocks," the sources said.

The Union Food and Agriculture Minister, Mr Sharad Pawar, has also ruled out allocation of foodgrains from the stocks held by the Food Corporation of India (FCI) as the buffer stocks are below norms for rice.

As on October 1, rice stocks with FCI were 60.92 lakh tonnes against the norm of 65 lakh tonnes. This is against a stock level of 214.52 lakh tonnes during the same period in 2001 and 157.70 lt in 2002.

Though rice production is expected to be around last year's level of 72.4 million tonnes, exporters don't expect the Government to ease exports.

"Export is not a priority for the Government and therefore, we don't expect the Centre to decide on incentives for exports immediately," the sources said.

"As of now, we can export par-boiled rice. Any shipment of white rice will be possible only if the price rises in the global market or the Government comes out with the promotion scheme," they added.
MGR Archive 2.12.2004
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Russia Rapan $ 700
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EU Prices Baldo €660
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