Export ban on rice, wheat to be reviewed by Nov 9

September 4th, 2008 - 2:16 pm ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, Sep 4 (IANS) The central government will review the current ban on export of rice, wheat, maize and pulses by Nov 9, a top government official said here.”The empowered group of ministers will take a decision on the first week of November based on the agriculture minister’s assessment,” Commerce Secretary G.K. Pillai told reporters on the sidelines of a function Wednesday night.

The ban on the export of rice variety Pusa 1121 has been lifted temporarily and will come into effect Oct 15, he said.

Regarding rice, Pillai said the stock position would be known by early October and a decision taken the following month.

There would be seven million tonne of excess rice output this year, opening “opportunities for export”, he said.

“We produced 92 million tonnes of rice and consumed 88 million tonnes last year. This year we will produce 95 million tonnes,” Pillai added.

On the proposed move to lift incentives on sugar exports to calm domestic prices, Pillai said a decision will be taken in September.

“The recommendation of the committee of secretaries has gone to the agriculture ministry. A decision will be taken this month,” Pillai said.

He predicted inflation would come down to a single digit by December following the drop in prices of edible oil, wheat, steel, and factors such as contraction of demand and arrival of the vegetable harvest season in October-December.

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