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States must encourage farmers to increase paddy, wheat sowing to boost exports: Piyush Goyal.

Jul 06, 2022

Union food and consumer affairs minister Piyush Goyal on Tuesday asked states to encourage farmers to increase sowing area of paddy and wheat as higher domestic production will boost India's exports.
 
Addressing a conference of state food ministers on food and nutrition security in India, the minister asked state governments to submit their pending food subsidy claims up to 2019-20 fiscal years at the earliest for speedy settlements of old accounts.
 
Goyal told state governments that there is no shortage of funds with the Centre for settling old food subsidy claims but the delay was because states are not filing their claims with proper documents.
 
The Union minister urged all states to submit their claims by August 15 with all supporting papers and audit reports.
 
The states which will file claims by August 15 will get their dues by October 15. However, if the papers are filed by September 30, the settlement will be made by January 2023 without any interest.
 
'Very often states come to us saying that we have old pending subsidy claims. Very often the subsidy claims are pending not because of funds are not available, because you are not providing the data and you are not fulfilling the requirements of audit as has been very well articulated to all of you,' Goyal said.
 
'We are ready to clear everybody's dues up to the year 2019-20...if you do not submit your claims with the supportings, we will consider your claims as null and void and we will close all files till 2019-20,' he added.
 
The Centre has come out with a new subsidy claim settlement policy, he said, and asked states to give their suggestions on the same.
 
Goyal said the claims for 2020-21 onwards should be filed online by the state governments.
 
As many participating States/UTs raised concern over the delay in CAG audit, he directed the food ministry officials to get in touch with CAG for expediting the audits.
 
During the meet, the union minister also urged all states to increase the sowing of rice and wheat.
 
'This will help us increase exports and help farmers as there is growing demand internationally,' he added.
 
Paddy crop is sown in both Kharif (summer-sown) and rabi (winter-sown) seasons, while wheat is a rabi crop.
 
India has currently banned wheat exports as the country's production and the government's procurement were impacted because of heat wave during March.
 
The minister highlighted that the 'One Nation One Ration Card (ONORC) scheme has already been implemented across the country and 45 crore transactions have already happened under this initiative.
 
Goyal asked states to use the ONORC going forward, to issue Ayushman Bharat cards as well as for immunisation. Uttar Pradesh has already started using this system to make free healthcare available.
 
During the meeting, the Union minister also expressed disappointment that food ministers of several states did not attend this conference.
 
The absence of states of Telangana, Orissa, Jharkhand, Delhi, Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam and Nagaland reflects poorly, he added.
 
    
Source: timesofindia.indiatimes.com



Boosting agri ties: India, Russia sign MoU for commercialisation of biocapsule.

Jul 06, 2022

The Indian Institute of Spices Research (IISR) under the Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR) inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Lysterra LLC, a Russia-based company for commercialisation of biocapsule, an encapsulation technology for bio-fertilisation.
 
Microbial encapsulation technology, a major invention patented by the IISR, is used to encapsulate all agriculturally important microorganisms for smart delivery of beneficial micro-organisms as bio-fertilisers to crops. Four Indian firms have already secured non-exclusive licences from the IISR for commercial production of biocapsules using this unique technology.
 
T. Mohapatra, Director General, ICAR, presided over the virtual meet that witnessed the inking of the international MoU. Lysterra LLC, which is known for the production of crop protection products, was represented by its president Vladimir Zarev, general director Liudmila Alginina, and head of marketing and eAnastasia Romanovskaya.
 
Dr. Mohapatra said new technology generation efforts and commercialisation attempts should go hand-in-hand for the overall development of the agriculture sector. The demand for new technology among foreign entities was indicative of its effectiveness, he observed.
 
C.K. Thankamani, Director, IISR, said Lysterra LLC was the first foreign company to commercialise the microbial encapsulation technology developed by the IISR. She also described it as a 'proud moment' for the institute.
    
Source: economictimes.indiatimes.com



As prices of parboiled rice surge, export demand for India’s broken rice picks up.

Jul 06, 2022

The demand for Indian broken rice has increased after prices of parboiled rice surged over the past 10 days after the Centre raised the minimum support price (MSP) for paddy for the current crop year and Bangladesh cut the import duty on rice, according to exporters. 
 
For the current crop year that began on July 1, the Centre has fixed the MSP at  Rs.2,040 a quintal — up Rs.100 from last crop year. On June 22, Bangladesh cut the import duty on rice to 25 per cent from 62.5 per cent.  
 
 'Parboiled prices for exports have increased to $380-390 a tonne now from around $350 before Bangladesh lowered the Customs duty. This has resulted in some buyers like some from Djibouti seeking broken white rice instead of parboiled,' said VR Vidya Sagar, Director, Bulk Logix. 
 
Chinese demand
Despite the hike in prices, Indian parboiled rice is the most competitive in the global market. According to the Thailand Rice Exporters Association data, Indian parboiled rice is at least $40 a tonne lower than Pakistan’s offering.  
 
'Broken rice is in demand from China and South-East Asia too. Enquiries from South-East Asia are a tad lower in view of broken rice prices ruling higher than last year. China is buying broken rice but it could slow its purchases from next month as its crop is set to arrive,' said M Madan Prakash, President, Agri Commodities Exporters Association (ACEA). 
 
According to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), Vietnam’s rice imports are likely to be 25 per cent lower as it is likely to cut its broken rice purchases from India. But China’s imports will continue at a record pace for feed purposes.
 
Better $ realisation
'Almost 100 per cent of broken rice consignments are currently heading to China. Prices are gaining due to higher US dollar realisation,' said Delhi-based exporter Rajesh Paharia Jain. 
 
Though Bangladesh has opened up its market for more imports through the duty cut, the USDA said purchases from India, its main supplier, would be weak. Still, it projects India’s rice exports at 22 million tonnes (mt) this calendar year.  
 
The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) said though prices of rice increased for the fifth consecutive month in the global market in May, Indian rice was competitive as the arrivals from the Rabi harvest continued. 
 
'India is competitive since Indian exporters sell at $20-30 a tonne discount,' Jains said. 
 
‘No replacement'
BV Krishna Rao, President, The Rice Exporters Association of India (TREA), said broken white rice cannot replace parboiled in Africa. 'Barring Senegal and Ivory Coast, no other African country buys broken rice. Even if broken rice rules higher than other varieties, they will buy this variety as they are used to it,' he said. 
 
He said parboiled rice prices generally tend to vary between $360 and $390 depending on whether it was the peak or lean arrival season. 'Prices have been behaving this way over the last 5-7 years,' he said.
 
Rice prices have also gained on the increase in MSP for the current crop year. 'The rise in MSP has resulted in open market prices increasing sharply,' said Bulk Logix’s Sagar. 
 
'Broken rice prices are ruling higher because in the domestic market it is being diverted as poultry feed,' said ACEA’s Prakash. 
 
Thailand’s rebound
According to the USDA, though India might export 22 mt of rice, Thailand will rebound as the number two exporter this year following a recovery in production. Thailand’s production is projected at 19.8 mt in view of a higher area under the crop’s cultivation.
 
Thailand’s rice exports had increased by 57 per cent during January-April this year at  2.29 mt with white rice making up 1.13 mt and parboiled 0.32 mt. According to the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), rice exports in April were lower at 1.35 mt against 1.68 in April last year. 
 
Rice exports were affected in April as the Centre focussed more on wheat exports, which increased by almost five times. However, wheat shipments were banned on May 13 after a heatwave affected the crop and the Food Corporation of India was able to procure less than 50 per cent of the 43.44 mt of the grain it procured last year. 
 
India’s rice exports have been buoyed by record production over the last six seasons with the output during 2021-22 being estimated at a record 129.66 mt. The FCI also had ample stocks of rice at 33.12 mt besides 24.7 mt of paddy (15.8 mt rice), which is much higher than the mandatory norm of 13.5 mt (11.5 operational stock and 2 mt of strategic reserve) as of July 1.
    
Source: thehindubusinessline.com



Maharashtra exporters upbeat as mango export via sea a success.

Jul 06, 2022

MAHARASHTRA STATE Agricultural Marketing Board (MSAMB)’s successful experiment last month to send mangoes by sea has left exporters upbeat that it would open more markets for them.
 
For this, MSAMB collaborated with the Bhabha Atomic Research Center (BARC) to increase the shelf life of mangoes and prevent their over-ripening during the journey.
 
M/S Sanap Agroanimals Private Limited took the initiative to send mangoes by sea. The process involved dipping the fruit in Sodium Hypocholride solution at 52 degree celsius and then treating the same in a special chemical solution developed by BARC. This treated mango was packed into boxes of three kg each and then shipped by the sea route. The consignment was flagged off by MSAMB managing director Sunil Pawar on June 5. The consignment reached in 25 days and the mangoes were in excellent condition.
 
Indian mangoes reached the US shores after a gap of two years. Normally, exporters take the air cargo route but the cost of transportation eats into the profits. During the export season, air cargo rates rise sharply, which often puts exporters at risk. Freight charges from Mumbai to USA, during the export period zoomed up to Rs 550/kg from Rs 220/kg. Also, unavailability of cargo space in aircraft often puts exporters at risk of losing their business.
 
The present mango season saw 1,100 tonnes of the fruit being exported from India. The sea route, while definitely more economical, has barely been explored due to logistical issues. As compared to air cargo, sea cargo rates are as low as Rs 15kg but the long journey poses threat to the quality of the consignment. Exports for the USA have to be irradiated before they are shipped out. This year, BARC, MSAMB and the Agricultural Produce Export Development Authority (APEDA) worked on modalities to increase the shelf life of mangoes sent by ship.
    
Source: indianexpress.com



Shri Goyal asks States/UTs to leverage Public Distribution System to issue Ayushman Bharat card thereby, providing food and health security

Jul 06, 2022

Odisha has been adjudged the top ranked State followed by Uttar Pradesh at the 2nd spot and Andhra Pradesh at third amongst the General Category States in ‘State Ranking Index for NFSA’. Among the Special Category states/UTs, Tripura stood first followed by Himachal Pradesh and Sikkim respectively. Further, among the 3 UTs where Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT)- Cash is operational, Dadra and Nagar Haveli & Daman and Diu is the top ranked UT.
 
Union Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Textiles and Commerce and Industry, Shri Piyush Goyal released the 1st edition of ‘State Ranking Index for NFSA’ during the conference of Food Ministers of States/UTs on ‘Food Nutrition and Security in India’ organized by Department of Food and Public Distribution here today. Ms. Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, Minister of State for Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution and Rural Development along with Secretary DFPD, Shri Sudhanshu Pandey along with Food Ministers and senior officials of 8 states were present at the daylong conference.
 
This 'State ranking Index for NFSA' attempts to document the status and progress of implementation of NFSA and various reform initiatives across the country, post consultation with states. It highlights the reforms undertaken by States and UTs and create a cross-learning environment and scale-up reform measures by all states and union territories. The present Index is largely focused on NFSA Distribution and will include procurement, PMGKAY Distribution in future. The Index for ranking the states and UTs is built on three key pillars which covers the end-to-end implementation of NFSA through TPDS. These pillars are: i) NFSA— Coverage, targeting and provisions of the Act, ii) Delivery platform, and iii) Nutrition initiatives. The detailed list of the States is at Annexure-I.
 
The National Food Security Act (NFSA) was enacted on July 5, 2013 and in order to celebrate the day, the conference was organized to deliberate and discuss nutritional security, food security, best practices followed in Public Distribution System, crop diversification, reforms in PDS and storage sector.
 
Speaking on the occasion, Shri Goyal said that India is now 100% connected under One Nation One Ration Card (ONORC). He complemented Hon’ble PM Shri Narendra Modi for visualizing this pathbreaking initiative and all those associated with it. He said that 45 crore transitions have taken so far providing the beneficiaries the freedom to collect ration from any State/UT in the country. He said that during COVID, ONORC supported migrants.
 
Shri Goyal said that going forward, the system of digitized, Aadhaar linked Public Distribution will be used to issue Ayushman Bharat Card. He mentioned that Uttar Pradesh is using the system to issue Ayushman Bharat card. He urged other states to consider this system to provide nutritional security as well as health security. He said that immunization of migrant kids can also be linked with the system to ensure medical facility to them.
 
Talking about the food subsidy to states, Shri Goyal announced that the deadline to submit claims of pending dues till the year 2019-20 is August 15, 2022. He reiterated that no dues will be entertained after the deadline. He added that the pending bills of the States/UTs that will finalize the audited accounts with supporting documents by August 15, 2022, will be cleared within 60 days (October 15, 2022). However, the States/UTs that will provide details in next 3 months (July-Sept 2022), their bills will be paid by January 31, 2023. And the States/UTs that will take longer than that, will not be paid any interest. He further said that the subsidy claims are pending not because the funds are not available with the Centre, but because the States/UTs are not providing relevant data. As many participating States/UTs raised concern over delay in CAG audit, he directed the officials to get in touch with CAG for expediting the audits. Adding on he said that all claims after April 2020, will be digitized. Shri Goyal said that the absence of states Telangana, Orissa, Jharkhand, Delhi, Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam and Nagaland reflects poorly.
 
Earlier, the Conference began with a moderated discussion on food security, rice fortification and food-basket diversification. The panel discussion was moderated by Shri Vinay Kumar, Secretary, Food & Consumer Protection Department, Government of Bihar and joined by Smt Mamta Shankar, Sr. Economic Advisor, Department of Food and Public Distribution, Government of India; Dr Kapil Yadav, Additional Professor, Community Medicine, AIIMS; Dr Shariqua Yunus, Head Nutrition Unit, World Food Programme; Dr MS Radhika, Sr. Scientist, ICMR-NIN; and Dr Konda Reddy Chavva, Consultant, FAO (India).
    
Source: pib.gov.in



Govt mulls over Rs 5,000-crore scheme to develop key districts into export hubs.

Jul 06, 2022

The new foreign trade policy (FTP), which will come into force in October, is likely to provide support of at least Rs 5,000 crore to develop select districts as export hubs, official sources told FE.
 
This could be the most significant announcement by the government in the new FTP as far as fiscal assistance is concerned, given that most of the other key schemes involving even greater outlays have already been declared.
 
The assistance could be in the form of grants to states. The scheme to develop export hubs in various districts may be designed as a centrally-sponsered scheme (CSS) under which the Centre may extend about 60% of the funds and 40% will have to be borne by the states, one of the sources said. Initially, the commerce ministry may run pilot projects in about 50 districts across the country and gradually widen the initiative to cover more districts, he added. 'A precise estimate of the assistance is still being worked out by the commerce ministry,' he added.
 
Currently, while states are being encouraged to develop key districts into export hubs, there is no specific central government support for this purpose. The likely aid under the new FTP is expected to encourage states to do their bit as well.
 
The move is part of the commerce ministry’s plan to implement the idea, mooted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, to develop each district into an export hub. 'Commerce and industry minister Piyush Goyal is very keen on making this a reality and is monitoring initiatives for this purpose,' one of the sources said.
 
In the extant FTP, announced in 2015, the government had declared the Merchandise Export from India Scheme (MEIS) by merging five different schemes and sharply raising budgetary allocation for it. It had allocated Rs 39,097 crore for exporters under the MEIS for the pre-pandemic year (FY20). This scheme was replaced with the Remission of Duties and Taxes on Exported Products (RoDTEP) programme from January 2021. The validity of the current FTP, which was to expire in 2020, was extended until September 2022 in the wake of the Covid outbreak.
 
The government has already earmarked Rs 21,340 crore for tax remission schemes for exporters like RoDTEP and RoSCTL in the Budget for FY23. This has substantially reduced the scope for any new big programme, apart from the one for services exporters. As such, Goyal has repeatedly exhorted exporters to shun the crutches of subsidies and instead boost their competitiveness, which would be key to achieving sustainable export growth.
 
Since the FTP is being designed in the aftermath of the Covid-19 outbreak, it would lay stress on ensuring India’s greater integration with the global supply chain and reducing elevated logistics costs. Moreover, the Atmanirbhar Bharat initiative will find a befitting expression in the policy, according to the sources.
 
The new policy will come at a time when exports are facing considerable external headwinds in the wake of the Russia-Ukraine war and the government is seeking to build upon a resurgence in outbound shipments, witnessed in FY22, in the current fiscal. As such, the country is aiming at realising a lofty merchandise export target of $1 trillion by FY28 from a record $422 billion in FY22. Developing key districts into export hubs is a crucial, albeit challenging, initiative in that direction.
    
Source: financialexpress.com



Govt may save Rs 10K cr on clearing dues to exporters.

Jul 06, 2022

The government may end up saving about Rs 10,000 crore from its allocation of Rs 56,027 crore, announced in September last year, to clear all the pending dues owed to exporters until FY21 under various schemes, a senior official told FE.
 
The commerce ministry already cleared Rs 32,000 crore in FY22 and, based on the scrutiny of exporters’ claims so far, it expects the total outgo to be about Rs 10,000 crore less than the initial estimate. All the arrears will be settled this fiscal, said the official. The proposed outlay covers dues under both export promotion and duty remission schemes.
 
The dues amount is being disbursed in the form of scrips to more than 45,000 exporters, about 98% of whom are small and medium enterprises. The exporters can use these scrips to pay import duties or can sell these to importers who, in turn, can use them to pay the customs duties. 'So, these (about Rs 10,000 crore) are notional gains for the government,' said the official.
 
While the gain is notional, it still comes as a relief to the government, which has been forced to announce a raft of additional spending commitments or forgo potential revenue in the wake of a spike in global commodity prices, especially of oil, due to the Ukraine war.
 
The massive outlay was announced to bolster Covid-hit exporters’ cash flow, and enable them to take advantage of a post-pandemic surge in demand for merchandise and services in advanced economies. The move also ended uncertainties over the release of past arrears.
 
The Rs 56,027-crore allocation was for different export promotion and remission schemes: Merchandise Exports from India Scheme (Rs 33,010 crore), Services Exports from India Scheme (Rs 10,002 crore), Rebate of State and Central Levies and Taxes Rs 5,286 cr), Rebate of State Levies (Rs 330 crore), Remissions of Duties and Taxes on Exported Products , or RoDTEP (Rs 2,568 crore), and other legacy schemes like ‘Target Plus’ for high-performing export houses, etc (Rs 4,831 crore).
 
The Rs 2,568-crore outlay for the RoDTEP was for the January-March 2021 period (The scheme was introduced on January 1, 2021, replacing the MEIS).
 
Commerce and industry minister Piyush Goyal had then asked exporters to file all the pending claims (until FY21) by December 31, 2021, so that all the dues could be cleared at the earliest. The IT portal of the commerce ministry for exporters to file claims was enabled to accept applications. This would be integrated with a mechanism set up by the finance ministry to monitor the provisioning and disbursement of the export incentives under a budgetary framework.
 
After a Covid-induced 7% drop in FY21 to $292 billion, the country’s exports hit a record $422 in FY23, far exceeding the previous record of $330 billion.
    
Source: financialexpress.com



Karnataka: Belagavi included in Krishi Udan.

Jul 06, 2022

After Hubballi, now Belagavi has got Krishi Udan scheme 2.0. Belagavi is among the five airports included in the scheme by the Central government. There are now 58 airports under the scheme.
 
This scheme is an aiming to export agriculture produce from one place to another quickly. It will also help farmers get higher income and send their produce to farther places which were earlier limited due to the use of trains or trucks transport the goods.
 
Earlier in Karnataka, the Mysore and Hubballi were included in Krish Uadan Scheme. However, as North Karnataka people and farmers have been demanding the inclusion of Belagavi in the scheme as it is known for agriculture and is also well irrigated.
 
Chikkodi MP Annashaheb Jolle had also urged to Union government to launch Udan flights at Belagavi’s Sambra airport.
 
Union civic aviation minister Jyotiraditya Scindia announced the inclusion of Belagavi to the scheme.
 
Many farmer leaders have welcomed the development and paid gratitude to the Central government.
    
Source: timesofindia.indiatimes.com



GI tag sought for Chettikulam small onion.

Jul 06, 2022

The Tamil Nadu State Agricultural Marketing Board and the Chettikulam Small Onion Farmers’ Producer Association, Perambalur, have filed an application seeking Geographical Indications (GI) tag for the Chettikulam small onion. NABARD-Madurai Agri Business Incubation Forum is the facilitator for this application.
 
According to details provided by P. Sanjai Gandhi, the IPR attorney who submitted the documents on behalf of the applicants, this particular onion is cultivated in Chettikulam village, Allathur block, Perambalur district. Every year, 70,000 tonnes of small onion are produced in over 12,500 hectares of land area here. Due to the presence of high sulphur content in this region, this particular onion has the highest pungency taste when compared to the other variants. It has around 15-18 layers of dried outer scales. And has a shelf life of 8-9 months.
 
The Ministry of Food Processing Industries has been working on the ‘Mission Onion Programme’ – a concept to double farmers’ income by 2022. As a flagship initiative, the institute has established a Common Food Processing Incubation Centre at Chettikulam village to redress the needs of small onion farmers jointly with the Tamil Nadu State Department of Agricultural Marketing. This highlights the importance on small onions in this region.
 
Chettikulam houses a Dhandayuthapani temple which is dedicated to Hindu God Lord Murugan, commonly called Vadapalani in the region. After the harvest, people around the village give some quantity of it as ‘dhakshanai’ to the temple.
    
Source: thehindu.com



Export restriction on potatoes from Bhutan to India lifted .

Jul 06, 2022

The government of India (GoI) has given a one-year extension of exemption on the export of potatoes from Bhutan to India.
 
India’s ministry of commerce and industry notified on July 4 that the import of potatoes from Bhutan is permitted freely, without any license up to June 30, 2023.
 
The export of potatoes from Bhutan was stopped in 2020. Temporary exemptions to export were provided by the GoI in 2020 and then in 2021, which expired on June 30, this year.
 
A trade official said that despite not getting the exemption for perpetuity for the export of potatoes, the government remains thankful to the GoI for the exemption.
 
The official said that this is a testimony to the excellent bilateral relations that is shared by the two countries and even with the challenges faced; India always finds a way to accommodate the needs of Bhutan.
 
Potatoes are primary agricultural produce and thousands of farmers across Bhutan who depend on this crop as a means of livelihood. Similarly, there are numerous traders, entrepreneurs and consumers in India who depend on Bhutanese potatoes.
 
The trade of potatoes has been ongoing for decades and immensely enhances the people-to-people interaction between two countries for mutual benefit.
 
The average annual export of Bhutanese potatoes is around 20,000MT and account for around 0.04 percent of India’s domestic production.
 
The trade official said that Bhutanese potato export is not at all substantial and will also not affect India’s domestic market. On the contrary, it augments India’s domestic supply, particularly in seasons where there is low production and costs of local potatoes are high.
 
'The government of Bhutan requested GoI to exempt Bhutan from the import restrictions outlined in the Import Policy 2017 for import of Potato for perpetuity based on the aforementioned reasons and on account of our excellent bilateral relations,' the official said.
 
Similarly, GoI will also be supplying 10,000 litres of Nano Urea or Nano Nitrogen Fertilizer (Liquid) and 111,000MT of coal annualy to Bhutan.
 
According to a press release from the Embassy of India, fertilizers will be supplied through the Indian Farmers Fertilizer Cooperative Limited (IFFCO) at a special concessional rate.
 
It states that this is intended to benefit the Bhutanese farmers who depend on agriculture for their livelihoods, both for domestic consumption and the export market.
 
The press release also states that the GoI will be supplying coal to Bhutan through Coal India Limited (CIL), to meet the requirement of the coal-dependent industry in Bhutan and allow for unhindered supply and export of related products to India.
 
'It is hoped that the supply of coal from India will greatly alleviate the current shortage of coal in Bhutan, which has an impact on cement production and on construction activities in Bhutan,' the press release said.
 
In 2020-21, the GoI had formally notified 12 additional agri-exports of Bhutan including potatoes in the plant quarantine order of India, thereby allowing formal market access to these Bhutanese products in India.
 
In order to facilitate bilateral trade of agri-products, India opened a new plant quarantine office at Jaigaon in 2020.
 
The press release states that despite challenges brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic and disruptions in the global supply chains, India has been extending the fullest cooperation and support to Bhutan in order to ensure the smooth movement of commodities during this period.
 
'Our close trade and economic ties are a reflection of the exceptionally close and friendly relations between India and Bhutan that have existed over decades. In view of this special relationship, notwithstanding global supply chain disruptions and shortages of various commodities, India has decided to accommodate Bhutan’s special requests,' the embassy’s press release states.
 
Meanwhile, the trade official said that the government of Bhutan continues to regularly follow up on the export of areca nuts freely without any restrictions to India.
 
'We have been informed that the matter is still under examination by the relevant authorities in India and that they will revert soon with a favourable outcome for Bhutan on account of the excellent bilateral relations and as the amount is also very small,' the official said.
 
The GoI also recently revised the import policy of India to allow the import of fresh wholly produced ginger from Bhutan, with effect from May 19, 2022.
    
Source: kuenselonline.com



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