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Centre plans to continue checks on onion exports

Ajay Modi  |  New Delhi 

The government has decided to continue with the regulations it imposed on onion exports earlier this month.
On October 1, the government stopped issuance of fresh no-objection-certificate (NoC) allowing exports for 15 days. It also raised the minimum exports price (MEP) of onion from $445 to $495 a tonne to make exports unattractive and augment domestic availability.
"Though the situation is improving, we will continue with the regulations on NoC till further orders from the government. The MEP will also continue at the current levels of $495," said Alok Ranjan, managing director of National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation (Nafed), the agency that revises MEP on a monthly basis. Since onion exports are canalised, exporters are required to obtain NoCs from Nafed and 12 state agencies.
Apart from the NoC restrictions, exporters are now also required to obtain licence from the ministry of commerce before undertaking exports.
Onion is currently selling at Rs 22-24 a kg as against Rs 24-28 earlier this month. The MEP has been raised from $225 a tonne in May to $495 a tonne in October. Despite this, domestic onion prices have continued to rise sharply.
Nafed, Mother Dairy, Kendriya Bhandar and Delhi Government's Food and Supplies Department are selling onions at Rs 18 a kg at their respective outlets to keep prices under check.
During the April-September period this year, the country exported 382,000 tonnes of onion, roughly a 36 per cent decline over 605,000 tonnes in the same period last year.
According to the National Horticultural Research and Development Foundation (NHRDF), this year's kharif crop of onion is estimated at 17 lakh tonnes, up 30 per cent from last year.
PRICE TO PAY
  • Onion is currently selling at Rs 22-24 per kg as against Rs 24-28 earlier this month
  • Though the MEP was raised from $225 a tonne in May to $495 in October, domestic onion prices have continued to rise sharply
  • Nafed, Mother Dairy, Kendriya Bhandar and Delhi Government's Food and Supplies Department are selling onions at Rs 18 per kg to keep prices under check
  • During April-September, the country exported 382,000 tonnes of onion, roughly a 36 per cent decline over 605,000 tonnes in the same period last year
  • First Published: Tue, October 16 2007. 00:00 IST
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