India's pulses import jumps 50% to Rs.25,500 cr in FY16
The Dollar Business Bureau
India’s imports of pulses increased by 50 percent in terms of value to Rs.25,691 crore in the last fiscal of 2015-16, with imports totaling 5.8 million tonnes.
India imported 4.58 million tonnes of the major kitchen staple amounting to Rs.17,063 crore, said S S Ahluwalia, Minister of State for Agriculture in a written response to the Upper House. He said, that the country has a buffer stock of 69,000 tonnes of pulses at the closing of the month of July 2016. Stating the reasons for the decrease in the output of pulses, the minister said, the output of pulses dropped to 17.06 million tonnes in crop year (July-June) 2015-16 compared to 17.15 million tonnes in the preceding year due to two consecutive droughts whereas the domestic demand for pulses stands at 23.5 million tonnes.
The government on its part is taking some dynamic steps to increase the quantity of pulses in the country by importing it from Mozambique, he said in a reply to a question in the Upper House. And the government has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Mozambique for the same.
“This MoU fixes targets of minimum quantities of export of tur and other pulses from Mozambique to India over the next five years whether through private channels or government to government sales...,” he added.
The government has also set a target of importing 1 lakh tonnes of pulses in current fiscal, 1.25 lakh tonnes in 2017-18, 1.20 lakh tonnes in 2018-19, 1.75 lakh tonnes in 2019-20 and 2 lakh tonnes in 2020-21. And in order to give a boost to domestic production of pulses he said the government has raised the minimum support prices (MSPs) of pulses and cereals for current season of 2016-17. The government will give a bonus of Rs.425 on every quintal of kharif pulses, specifically tur (arhar), moong and urad, above the MSPs for current year," he added.