In a bid to regulate overseas shipments of basmati rice, India announced on Saturday its decision to uphold the floor price for basmati rice exports until further notice, as outlined in a government order. The move comes as India, the world’s largest exporter of basmati rice, seeks to curb exports of this prized grain.
The Indian government initially imposed a minimum export price (MEP) of $1,200 per ton on basmati rice shipments back in August. This was done with the intention of stabilizing domestic rice prices in anticipation of key state elections. The MEP was set to be in place until Sunday, but a recent government order has extended its maintenance indefinitely.
It’s important to note that India had already implemented measures to control rice exports earlier this year. In July, the South Asian nation imposed a complete ban on the export of non-basmati white rice. This decision was part of India’s strategy to preserve domestic rice supplies and maintain price stability within the country.
Additionally, on a more recent note, India introduced a 20% duty on the exports of parboiled rice just last Friday. These measures collectively underscore India’s commitment to overseeing its rice export policies and ensuring that the availability of rice varieties is managed in accordance with domestic demand.
One of the primary objectives of maintaining the MEP for basmati rice exports is to safeguard against the mislabeling of non-basmati rice as basmati rice in international markets. This distinction is crucial, as basmati rice is highly regarded for its distinctive aroma, long grains, and culinary excellence, making it a valuable and sought-after commodity in global trade.
While these regulatory measures may temporarily impact global basmati rice supplies, they are pivotal in ensuring that India’s domestic market remains stable and that the international trade in basmati rice maintains its integrity.
The decision to maintain the MEP until further notice signals India’s ongoing commitment to balancing the interests of its farmers, its citizens, and its position as a leading player in the global rice trade. As this situation evolves, the world will be closely watching for updates on India’s approach to rice exports and the potential effects on international rice markets.