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Government extends sugar export deadline by three months to help mills, farmers


NEW DELHI: The government has extended the deadline for exporting sugar from existing stocks by three months to December to help industry take advantage of the global supply disruption because of the pandemic, and clear cane dues of farmers.

In the 2019-20 sugar season which ends this month millers have contracted 5.7 million tonnes of sugar, close to the target of 6 million tonnes.

Every year, the government fixes mill wise quota for export under the Maximum Admissible Export Quantity (MAEQ).

“It has been decided that those sugar mills, which have partially exported their MAEQ quota of sugar season 2019-20 till the end of this month, will be allowed to export the balance quantity of their quota till the end of this calendar year,” said a senior food ministry official.

He said that the decision will help improve liquidity of sugar mills which will enable them to pay cane arrears to farmers. The government provides assistance of Rs 10,448 per tonne to sugar mills for exports.

“Cane arrears have mounted your Rs 13,000 crore. Exports will help millers clear their dues,” he said.

The official said that there is great demand of sugar in the global market due to supply disruption amid Covid-19.

“There is drought in Thailand. So countries like Indonesia and Malaysia which import from Thailand have turned to India. We expect to meet our target of 6 million tonnes due to extension of time limit as there are orders in global market,” the official said.

The government has also extend the claim submission deadline to 180 days.

“The claim for each tranche should be be submitted within 180 days from the date of issue of the last bill. Delayed submission up to 270 days would be allowed but would attract a penalty of 10% of the admissible amount. Beyond that no bill would be entertained,” the official said.

Praful Vithalani, chairman, All India Sugar Trade Association said that the extension in time period will help sugar mills to completely export of remaining 3 lakh tonnes of sugar.

“Till September we expect to ship around 5.7 million tonnes of sugar. So far 5.5 million tonnes have already been despatched. In the extended three months, we will export 3 lakh tonnes easily,” he said.





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