Export-Import of Agricultural Products

Ministry of Commerce & Industry
The export and import policies for agricultural products, which include the decisions onlifting/imposing bans on export/import of individual agricultural products, are framed keepingseveral factors in mind, such as availability of surplus over the domestic requirements (includingthe requirement of buffer stock and strategic reserve, if any), concerns of food security,diplomatic/humanitarian considerations, international demand and supply situation, pricecompetitiveness, need to balance between remunerative prices to the growers and availability ofagricultural products to common man at affordable prices etc. During the last three years, no banshave been imposed on export/import of any of the major agricultural products except for the banon export of onions, which has been imposed only recently from 29th September, 2019. As such,no study has been conducted in this regard.
The Agriculture Export Policy, brought out by the Government in December 2018, aimsat a stable trade policy for agricultural products, involving following steps:

  1. The processed agricultural products and all kinds of organic products will not be brought underthe ambit of any kind of export restriction (viz. Minimum Export Price, Export duty, Export bans,Export quota, Export capping, Export permit etc.) even though the primary agricultural product ornon-organic agricultural product is brought under some kind of export restrictions.
  2. Identification of commodities which are essential for food security in consultation with therelevant stakeholders and Ministries. Any export restriction on such identified commoditiesunder extreme price situation will be based on decision of a high level committee. Also, any kindof export prohibitions and restrictions on the identified commodities above would be taken up ina WTO compatible manner.

Consequent to the approval of policy, mandate of the Committee of Secretaries on ‘Essentialcommodities’ has been expanded to provide recommendation on export restrictions on a fewcommodities, which are essential for food security, under extreme price situation only.
This information was given by the Minister of Commerce and Industry, PiyushGoyal, in a written reply in the Lok Sabha today.

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