May raise sugar export quota after assessing domestic output: Food Ministry
The government, which has allowed export of six million tonnes of sugar till May 31 of the ongoing 2022-23 season, said on Sunday that it might allow more export after periodic assessment of domestic production.
A food ministry notification issued on November 5 said export quota of six million tonnes has been permitted from November 1 till May 31, 2023, with an option for millers to export on their own or through exporters or swap with domestic sale quota.
All the sugar mills were allocated a uniform export quota of 18.23 per cent of their three years average production of sugar in the operational sugar seasons that is 2019-20, 2020-21 and 2021-22. The sugar season runs from October to September.
In a statement issued on Sunday, the ministry said the export quota has been fixed based on the available initial estimates of sugarcane production in the country.
“The sugarcane production in the country will be reviewed periodically and based on the latest available estimates, the quantity of sugar exports to be allowed could be reconsidered,” the ministry said.
Mills have been asked to export allocated sugar quota speedily to make early payment to cane farmers, it said.
In the ongoing 2022-23 season, the ministry said sugar availability for domestic consumption would be 27.5 million tonnes, while 5 million tonnes of sugar would go for ethanol making and the closing balance would be about 5 million tonnes at end of the season.
Sugar production in 2022-23 season has commenced in Maharashtra and Karnataka in October, whereas in Uttar Pradesh and rest of the cane growing states it would kick off in a week’s time.
In October alone, mills had manufactured 405,000 tonnes of sugar which was lower by 14.73 per cent than the year-ago period, according to cooperative body National Federation of Cooperative Sugar Factories Ltd.
About 11 million tonnes of sugar was exported during the entire 2021-22 season and earned Rs 40,000 crore worth of foreign exchange for the country, the ministry said.
As on October 31, more than 96 per cent of cane dues of farmers for 2021-22 season were already cleared despite record procurement of sugarcane of more than Rs 1.18 lakh crore, it said.
Sugar production stood at record 35.92 million tonnes in the 2021-22 season. Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Karnataka are the top three sugar producing states in the country.
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