Government may allow export of 2 million tonne wheat
14 Apr 2009
The government is likely to allow export of 2 million tonnes of wheat out of its 15 million tonne stockpile, which is rising still. The export will be made by public sector entities like STC, MMTC and PEC, sources said.
''These three PSUs – State Trading Corporation of India, Metals and Minerals Trading Corporation and Projects, Equipment, Commodities Ltd may be allowed to export two million tonnes of wheat after 15 May,'' a senior government official said.
The export quota of 2 million tonnes will be equally divided among the three state firms, with each of them exporting about 65,000 tonnes of wheat, official sources said, adding, a notification to this effect will be issued after the elections.
The Empowered Group of Ministers (EgoM), headed by external affairs minister Pranab Mukerjee had on 5 March decided to lift the two-year ban on wheat exports after 15 May.
The EGoM 'in-principle' decided to lift the ban on wheat exports on 'private account' as the government has been releasing the grains to some countries on humanitarian grounds.
The modalities of wheat exports would be worked out by the committee of secretaries (CoS), headed by the cabinet secretary.
Wheat prices, meanwhile, have fallen by up to Rs50 per quintal in the national capital following increased arrivals of new crop from producing regions.
Reduced offtake by stockists and flour mills also put some pressure on the wheat prices. Increased arrivals of new crop in the wholesale market continues to put pressure on the wheat prices even as government wheat procurement doubled to 41.69 lakh tonnes in four days alone, with maximum purchases being done in Haryana and Punjab.