Declining rice crop yields in Thailand and Vietnam and their rising production costs could prove to be a boon for India’s rice exports in the current fiscal year, officials said. commercial sources. India currently exports rice at around $360 per tonne to major markets, while Thailand and Vietnam offer grain at around $420 per tonne. The gap, the sources say, is expected to widen in the coming months. In addition, the prospects of a reasonably bountiful kharif harvest could allow Indian exporters to achieve higher realizations. Even in terms of volume, India‘s rice exports in the current year could match or slightly exceed last year’s record high of 21 million tonnes, according to V Krishna Rao, chairman of the All India Rice Exporters Association.
The outlook for a new record high in rice shipments comes at a time when the country has imposed strict wheat export restrictions due to depleted domestic stocks.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rice Outlook Report released in June, world rice trade in calendar year 2022 is expected to hit a record high of 54.3 tons. “India’s exports are expected to reach a record 22 tonnes and account for nearly 41% of global shipments,” the report said. The USDA also said India’s projected rice exports are likely to exceed the combined shipments of the next three major exporters – Thailand, Vietnam and Pakistan this year.
Trade sources said major rice producers such as Vietnam, China and Thailand have raised the issue of high production and transportation costs which would make their rice much more expensive than what India is offering. Exports in value this year could be 10 to 12 billion dollars, an all-time high.
India has been the world’s largest rice exporter over the past decade – export earnings were $8.8 billion in 2020-21 and $9.6 billion in 2021- 22.
According to Commerce Ministry data, the value of India’s rice exports increased by 12% to $2.6 billion in the first quarter of the current fiscal year.
“We will maintain the momentum of rice exports in the current fiscal year through the shipment of quality rice,” said Mr. Angamuthu, chairman of the Agricultural and Processed Food Export Development Authority ( APEDA).
The Food Corporation of India (FCI) as of July 1, 2022 had rice stocks of over 31.7 MT against the buffer standard of 13.54 MT. However, this stock excludes 15 tonnes of rice that have not yet been received from millers by FCI.
An agriculture ministry official said widespread monsoon rains, especially in major rice-producing states since the beginning of the month, are expected to boost production of rice, which is mainly a kharif crop. . The official said rice plantings, which were over 22 percent behind last week compared to last year, have accelerated and rice plantings will soon reach normal levels.
“India is able to meet the needs of the global market to a large extent and exports are expected to pick up after two months, currently orders from earlier shipments are being fulfilled,” Vijay Setia, former chairman of All India Rice Exporters Association and an exporter, said.
According to DGCIS data, India exported rice to over 150 countries in 2021-22. “This indicates the diversification of India’s rice exports over the years,” said an official with the Ministry of Commerce.
Of the 21 tons of rice shipped in FY22, India exported more than 17 tons of non-basmati rice and the rest of the volume was aromatic and long-grain basmati rice. In terms of volume, Bangladesh, China, Benin and Nepal are the top five export destinations for rice.
According to the third advance estimates for the 2021-22 agricultural campaign (July-June), rice production is estimated at a record 129.66 tons against an average production of the last five years of 116 tons.