A 37 percent increase in all-India retail price of onions leads to export ban

India, September 16:

With an increase in onion prices in the country, the central government has banned its export, which is expected to bring the prices of the staple down, reports IANS. Onion exports from the country had increased considerably during the coronavirus pandemic, due to which domestic prices increased and supply decreased within the country.

At present, the retail price of onions is above Rs 40 per kg in Delhi and neighbouring areas. On Monday, onion prices at the Azadpur wholesale market ranged from Rs 13.75 to Rs 27.5 per kg. According to a notification issued on Monday by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, the export of all varieties of onions has been banned with immediate effect. The notification said that provisions of transitional agreements will not apply under this notification.

The government’s move to ban the export of onions followed a 37 per cent increase in all-India retail price over the last one month. At the same time, there was an increase in all-India wholesale price by 43 per cent over the last one month, they said. In Maharashtra, the prices of mandi arrivals of onion witnessed a 200 per cent price rise in September as compared to 154 per cent in August. On the other hand, onion exports jumped to 12 million tonnes from April to August this year as compared to 8 million tonnes in the same period of last year.Market experts say that onion exports from April to July 2020 went up by nearly 30 per cent compared with the previous year. Onion prices may witness another hike as heavy rains across south India have damaged standing onion crops.

Rajendra Sharma, General Secretary, Azadpur Mandi Potato Onion Merchant Association (POMA), said that the export ban was a good decision to put an end to increasing onion prices. Due to crop failure in south India, there is shortage of onion supplies and hence the Union government should focus on import as well, Sharma added.

Source: The Economic Times (India) .

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