Russia has lifted the ban on imports of rice and peanuts from India, after about nine months. This followed a series of marathon meetings between the governments of the two countries and India’s assurance of adhering to global quality standards.
Indian exporters would be able to send consignments of rice, rice cereals and peanuts to Russia with immediate effect. In December 2012, Russia had banned imports of rice, rice cereals and peanuts from India after khapra beetle (Trogoderma granarium), a pest found in stored grain products and seeds, was discovered in a few consignments.
Earlier, the ban had strained trade relations between India and Russia. The resumption of exports comes at a time when the Centre is pushing high quantities of exports to secure dollars. This would, in turn, help address the government’s current account deficit.
A communiqué posted on the website of Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority said, “The ministry of foreign affairs of the Russian Federation presents its compliments to the Embassy of India in the Russian Federation and has the honour to inform you based on the material on the results of the Rosselkhoznadzor delegation’s visit to India and the guarantees of the Indian side to comply with Russian phytosanitary requirements, Russolkhoznadzor considers possible to cancel temporary restrictions on the import of rice, rice cereal and peanuts from India to Russia starting September 1.”
“The ministry of foreign affairs of the Russian Federation avails itself of this opportunity to renew to the Embassy of India in the Russian Federation the assurances of its highest consideration,” it added.
Gurnam Arora, joint managing director, Kohinoor Foods (formerly Satnam Overseas), said, “Though Russia is not a big market for Indian rice exports, opening up this market would surely make a positive difference for exporters here.”
The issue was discussed at a recent meeting between Commerce Minister Anand Sharma and Russian Minister of Economic Development Alexey Valentinovich Ulyukaev on the sidelines of an Association of Southeast Asian Nations ministerial meeting in Brunei. Sharma assured sanitary and phytosanitary issues in exportable commodities would be addressed.
Vijay Setia, former president of the All India Rice Exporters’ Association, said, “The opening of the Russian market will help India’s rice exports grow.” India’s rice exports to Russia increased to $25 million in April-December 2012, compared with $4.5 million in the corresponding period of 2011.
(Source – http://www.blackseagrain.net/novosti/russia-lifts-ban-on-rice-imports-from-india)