New Delhi, August 6: Following a call from Prime Minister rendra Modi last week to consider sugar exports, Food and Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan on Thursday said a proposal was under consideration to ship four million tonnes on terms, including barter trade. “We want to export sugar to those countries where there is a requirement. The industry must take initiative in this regard,” Paswan told reporters on the margins of a conference here. “We also want to promote barter. Otherwise, 40 percent import duty will fixed and it will be of no use.”
Chairing a high-level meeting on Saturday, Modi had called for higher ethanol content in petrol and a concerted effort to push exports in a bid to lower the current sugar surplus and protect the interests of farmers to whom factories owe an estimated Rs.15,000 crore in cane arrears.
Besides the arrears to farmers, the meeting came against the backdrop of the Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA) estimating sugar output for the sugar season 2014-15 (October to September) at 28.3 million tonnes, another 28 million tonnes in the next season, and a carry over of 10 million tonnes. (ians)