From Chairman's Desk

April 2018

Dear friends,

 

Showing a positive sign of growth, India's exports increased by 4.5 per cent to US $ 25.8 billion in February 2018 as compared to US $24.7 billion in February 2017,

 

Cumulative value of exports for the period April-February 2017-18 was $273.7 billion against $246.5 billion, registering a growth of 11.02 per cent. Export sectors, which are recording healthy growth so far, include chemicals, engineering goods, and petroleum products.

 

Exports of groundnut declined to 4,23,414 tons during April-December 2017 from 4,74,086 tons during the corresponding period previous year. In value terms also groundnut exports declined to Rs. 2644.82 crores during this period from Rs. 3651.60 crores in the corresponding period of 2016.

 

Sesame seed exports during April-December 2017 increased to 2,55,171 tons in comparison to 2,30,612 tons during corresponding period previous year. In value terms, Sesame seed exports increased to 2172.70 crores from 2032.25 crores.

 

India imported 18370 tons of sesame seed during April’17 to January’18 in comparison to 69028 tons during 2017-18.

 

Price of various Oilseeds (US$) are hovering around the levels as follows:

 

Sesame Seeds

Basis FOB

Price per MT

March, 2018

Natural Whitish 99/1/1

Mundra / JNPT

1360

Natural Whitish 98/2/2

Mundra / JNPT

1340

Hulled autodried Sortex regular 99.95%

Mundra / JNPT

1610

Hulled autodried Sortex Premium 99.97%

Mundra / JNPT

1725

Black 99/1 Sortexed

Mundra

1320

Black Jet Sortexed

Mundra

1420

Ethiopian Whitish Humera

Djibouti

1400

Sudanese Whitish Gederaf

Port Sudan

1380

Nigerian Mixed

Lagos

1260

 

Groundnut

Basis FOB

Price per MT March 2018

India

50/60 Java

Mundra

1020

60/70 Java

Mundra

1000

80/90 Java

Mundra

950

40/ 50 Bold

Mundra

925

50/60 Bold

Mundra

900

60/70 Bold

Mundra

880

80/90 Java

Chennai

1050

International (March 2018)

USA

Jumbo Runners

CNF EU Main Ports

1400

 

Other Oilseeds/oils

Basis FOB

Price per MT March 2018

Safflower Seed 1%

JNPT

545-625

Mustard seeds Bold 1%

Mundra

675-700

Mustard seeds small 1%

Mundra

850-875

Castor Seeds

Mundra

700-725

Castor Oil FSG

Kandla, in bulk vessel

1425-1450

 

Source: Trade Estimates

 

India, which is largest exporter of groundnuts in world markets, has miniscule share of less than 1% share in the groundnut market of European Union. One of the main reason is that EU has extremely stringent permissible limit of aflatoxin, which is not based on any scientific study. The Council is vigorously pursuing for fixation of Codex standards for ready to eat peanuts. We are happy to inform you that the Codex Committee has agreed to discuss the proposal of 10 ppb or 15 ppb for ready to eat peanuts. The Electronic Working Group led by India proposed draft maximum level for aflatoxins in ready-to-eat peanuts and associated sampling plans during the Twelfth Session of CODEX COMMITTEE ON CONTAMINANTS IN FOODS held at Utrecht, Netherlands during 12 - 16 March 2018. On behalf of the Council, Shri Kishore Tanna, Convener Groundnut panel was part of Indian delegation. While India took a position of fixing aflatoxin standards at 10 ppb, EU wanted to retain the ML of 2 and 4 giving view point of increased risk of cancer due to aflatoxins. Except EU, most of the countries were in favour of 10 ppb or 15 ppb limits. At the conclusion of this discussion, it was decided that more data should be collected (maximum within 3 years) based on which the standard would be fixed.

 

For Council’s participation in the International Peanut Forum (IPF) 2018 being held at the Hilton Hotel, Athens, Greece during April 11-13, 2018, myself and Shri Kishore Tanna, Convener Groundnut panel have been deputed. I will have an opportunity to make a presentation about Indian groundnut scenario. During this session, we would also showcase a small film on Indian Peanut Sector showcasing the strengths of India and excellent food safety systems to meet the quality requirement of importing countries. Shri Kishore Tanna would represent the Council during the Panel discussion on “Supply and Demand”. Taking advantage of the proximity of the office of DG-Sante, we would also meet the EU officials to discuss the issues faced by Indian groundnut and sesame seed sector.

 

Council has represented with the Government about provision of incentives (MEIS) on export of groundnuts from India to arrest decline in exports.

 

An Ethiopian delegation comprising of officials from Ministry of Trade of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, Ethiopian Pulses, Oil Seeds and Spices Processors and Exporters Association (EPOSPEA), Ethiopia Commodity Exchange and Ethiopian Coffee and Tea Authority visited India. We met them on 17th March 2018 and had detailed discussion on sesame seed sector in both the countries.

 

The Council was invited to make a presentation on "Exports of oilseeds and oils - Role of Export Promotion Council and scope for bank finance" during the Conference on Financing of Agri Exports organised by the College of Agricultural Banking (CAB), Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on 13th March 2018. On behalf of the Council, Shri Suresh Ramrakhiani, CEO made a detailed presentation and highlighted that the benefit of Interest Equalisation Scheme is available to the exporters of products under 416 tariff lines and exports made by MSMEs across all ITC(HS) codes. With the objective of providing "ease of doing business, the Union Cabinet has approved amendment to Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development (MSMED) Act, 2006 for classifying MSMEs. As per the new definition, only manufacturer exporters having turnover less than 250 Cr are eligible for Interest Equalisation Scheme. Many SMEs who are getting benefit of this scheme, will be disallowed due to large turnover. The RBI will need to address this issue so that such companies are provided cheaper credit under the scheme. All Agri Products including oilseeds should be provided the benefit of interest subvention.

 

The agriculture sector is mostly unorganized. Most of the exports is conducted by merchant exporters. Merchant exporters form the backbone of agricultural export, they should also be given capital at reduced interest rate under this scheme.

 

In consonance with Hon’ble Prime Minister’s vision of “Doubling Farmer’s Income”, Shri Suresh Prabhu, Hon’ble Minister of Commerce and Industry has taken the initiative to come up with an “Agriculture Export Policy” in larger interest of farmers and agriculture exports. We are extremely thankful to the Ministry of Commerce & Industry for coming up with a draft “Agriculture Export Policy” which is aimed at doubling the agricultural exports and integrate Indian farmers and agricultural products to the global value chain. The Council has circulated draft Agriculture Export Policy to seek feedback/suggestions from members so as to provide the final shape to the Policy. We once again urge you to send your inputs as early as possible.

 

With Best Wishes and Regards,

 

Sanjay shah

(Chairman)

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