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    Govt defends wheat export ban: 'India accounts for less than 1% of global trade'

    Govt defends wheat export ban: 'India accounts for less than 1% of global trade'

    Govt defends wheat export ban: 'India accounts for less than 1% of global trade'
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    By CNBCTV18.com  IST (Updated)

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    Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Piyush Goyal at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2022 said that India's wheat exports are less than 1 percent of the world trade and hence the country's curbs should not affect the global markets.

    The government on Wednesday argued that India's decision of banning wheat export is unlikely to impact the global supply of the commodity as the country has an insignificant share among the wheat exporting nations.
    Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Piyush Goyal at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2022 said that India's wheat exports are less than 1 percent of the world trade and hence the country's curbs should not affect the global markets.
    Earlier this month, India banned wheat exports with immediate effect as part of the government’s efforts to control rising domestic prices and as heatwave across the country affects the domestic output.
    According to government sources, among the wheat exporting countries, India ranked 19th in 2020, 35th in 2019, 36th in 2018, 36th in 2017, and 37th in 2016.
    Countries with largest share in the overall quantity of wheat export (and India):
    Country and their % share 20202019201820172016
    Russia (18.78%)37.2731.8743.9733.0325.33
    USA (13.16%)26.1327.0722.5027.3024.04
    Canada (13.15%)26.1122.8122.8721.5419.70
    France (9.96%)19.7919.9618.9415.2318.34
    Ukraine (9.09%)18.0613.9016.3717.3117.92
    Australia (5.23%)10.409.5912.3521.9916.15
    Argentina (5.13%)10.2010.5411.7213.1010.27
    India  (0.47%)0.930.190.170.200.20
    Source: FAOSTAT; Quantity in MMT
    India's expected production for 2022-23 is at 105 million metric tonnes (MMT) which needs to fulfil the domestic consumption requirements, of which, about 30 MMT is needed for food security schemes such as National Food Security Act (NFSA), PMJKAY and OWS, said the government sources. About 42 MMT of wheat was distributed under NFSA and PMGKAY in the last financial year, they added.
    Terming India’s wheat export restriction fair and considerate, the government sources said that the step is aimed at managing overall food security situation in India and supporting the needs of neighboring and vulnerable countries.
    They added that the restrictions on export of wheat would not apply in cases where prior commitments have been made.
    According to them, India exported wheat worth $177 million and $473 million in March and April of this year respectively despite facing challenges of low wheat production as a result of extreme heat wave.
    The officials also highlighted export restrictions by other countries on wheat and other commodities saying that while major food producers have massive curbs in place on their exports, India's step was primarily to ensure food security for itself, neighbours and other vulnerable nations.
    "There are at least 8 countries (excluding India) such as Egypt, Turkey, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Kuwait, Kosovo, Ukraine, Belarus etc. which have exercised export restrictions on wheat that are still in force," they said.
    Besides, citing United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Food Waste Index 2021, they added that the household food waste of India is one of the lowest in the world.
    "Developed countries like USA (59), Japan (64), Italy (67), Germany (75) etc. all have higher household food wastage compared to India. Countries like Australia have almost double the food waste of India."
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