The Food Corp of India (FCI), the official foodgrain procurement agency of the central government, will begin electronic auctions for open market sale of wheat, on the National Spot Exchange Ltd (NSEL) platform, beginning 16 March, FCI said in a statement issued today.
FCI, however, did not give any details about the quantity to be auctioned. The state-run procurer had plans to sell 500,000 tonnes of wheat in the open market.
The government undertakes open market sales scheme (OMSS) through sale of excess stock in order to stabilise food grain prices in the country.
The excess stock is calculated on the basis of stocks available with the FCI after release to the public distribution system every year. FCI plans to sell a part of this stock electronically.
The country abstained from exporting foodgrains last year in the light of a shortfall in production and rising food prices in the wake of the global financial crisis.
FCI is expected to have a relatively high surplus stock, considering the fact that not many grains were exported form the country in 2009.