India has decided to allow the free export of sugar, enabling industry to ship surplus supplies to overseas food manufacturers.
The notification was issued by the food ministry more than a week after an inter-ministerial meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, concluded its decision eliminate the ceiling on sugar exports.
The move was implemented on May 11.
There are no longer quantitative restrictions on sugar exports and producers are not required to obtain an export release order from the food ministry in the current fiscal year.
India has been on a war footing to remove government controls over its sugar sector over the last few months.
The sugar industry, including the Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA) and other industry bodies, has long been asking for deregulation.
ISMA said this government move will see India export another two million tonnes of sugar in the remaining five months of the current marketing year.
Levy removal next?
The removal of the sugar levy is now the big initiative waiting approval. Currently, India’s sugar industry supplies 10% of its output as ‘levy’ to the government of India, which is sent to the country’s Public Distribution System.