India imposes minimum export price on potato, unlikely to impact prices

India imposes minimum export price on potato, unlikely to impact prices

Our bureau
New Delhi, Jun 29:

The Indian government has imposed a minimum export price (MEP) of $ 450 per tonne on potatoes for increasing domestic supplies.

However its unlikely to have significant impact on the domestic supplies as prices have started to rise in the recent weeks.

“We export only a small portion of our total output, thus imposing MEP only has a symbolic value,” a senior official said.
The Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) in a notification said that ‘export of potatoes is permitted subject to MEP of $ 450 per tonne”. The MEP regime comes into effect immediately, the statement said.

As part of government’s effort to rein in food prices, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley last week had announced series of measures including imposing export curbs in form of higher MEP on onion and potatoes.

The MEP on onion of $ 300 per tonne was notified on June 17.

According to ministry of consumer affairs data, the retail potato prices have been ruling to Rs 22 to Rs 30 per kg across key cities.

Traders however say the rise in potato prices is temporary as the country has sufficient stocks stored in mostly in key producing states of Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Punjab and Uttarranchal for meeting the domestic demand.

Rising prices of essential food items such as vegetables, fruits and cereals pushed up wholesale price index based inflation to five-month high of 6.01% in May.

India mostly exports potato to Nepal, Sri lanka, Russia, Mauritius and Kuwait.

Potato data

Year Output (in million tonne) Volume of exports (in lakh tonne) Value of exports in Rs/crore
2011-12 41 1.9 133
2012-13 45 1.6 148
2013-14 46 2.2 251

Source: Apeda / NDHRF

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