July 22, 2008

 

India's corn exports triple on-year, would have been more without ban 
   
  

India is likely to export at least 1.56 million tonnes of corn in the crop year to September 2008, triple the 500,000 tonnes a year ago, traders said on Monday (July 21, 2008).

 

Exports would have been even more if India had not implemented a ban in early July which is to last until October 15, analysts said. The country is currently facing inflation rates of close to 12 percent, the highest since 1992 as prices for major commodities climbed in the face of rising demand. 

 

Shipments where letters of credit had been opened before the ban were exempted from the ban.

 

Traders said India's exports would have easily risen another million–tonne more to 2.5 million tonnes without the government ban.

 

India's ban is also likely to help Thai corn exports double this year to 1 million tonnes. The ban has already pushed Thai export corn prices to US$350 per tonne currently from US$280 in late June, traders said.

 

According to government estimates, India's corn output in the year to June rose 28 percent to a record 19.31 million tonnes.

 

However, the country's poultry and starch industries have been urging the government to restrict exports in the face of soaring prices domestically.

 

The country's corn consumption is estimated at 15 million tonnes, with demand growing at about 10 percent annually.

 

Before the ban, rising exports have pushed prices to 9,600 rupees (US$224.50) a tonne in early July from 8,300 rupees per tonne last year, despite forecasts of record output.

 

India has also banned exports of wheat, non-basmati rice, vegetable oils, and cotton.

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