India increases sugar export to maintain price

August 2nd, 2011 - 7:43 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 2 (IANS) Buoyed by the better-than-expected sugarcane production, India has doubled its sugar export quota under open general licence to 10 lakh tonnes in a bid to maintain fair price in the domestic market, Minister of State for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution K.V. Thomas said Tuesday.

The government has allowed export of 5 lakh tonnes of raw, white/refined sugar under open general licence, in addition to 5 lakh tonnes allowed earlier in March and April, the minister said.

“The decision to allow export of sugar has been taken keeping in view the sugar stocks in the country, the estimated domestic consumption, the initial estimates about the sugarcane planting for the ensuing sugar season and the domestic prices of sugar,” the minister said in a written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha.

“The objective is to avoid sugar stock build up and resultant drop in prices,” he said.

The government has also permitted exports of 11.23 lakh tonnes of sugar to neighbouring countries under advance authorisation scheme and to the US and European Union countries under preferential quota.

In reply to another question in the lower house of parliament, Harish Rawat, Minister of State for Agriculture and Food Processing Industries, said total sugar production in the current 2010-11 season was estimated to reach 242 lakh tonnes.

Domestic demand is estimated at around 210-215 lakh tonnes, leading to an exportable surplus of almost 30 lakh tonnes.

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