Agriculture Industry

With ample sugar stocks, ISMA asks Centre to increase export quota by 1 mt

09 June 2022, New Delhi: The Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA), the apex body of private mills, has demanded that the Government increase the sugar export quota by one million tonnes (mt) from the current 10 mt.

With 94-95 lakh tonnes of sugar export contracts entered into so far, about 86 lakh tonnes were physically exported till May 2022 against the backdrop of the government capping the exports at 10 mt from June 1 for the current season, according to the Indian Sugar Mills Associations (ISMA).  

ISMA has raised its all-India sugar production estimate for the 2021-22 sugar season (October-September) to 360 lakh tonnes (lt) after considering the diversion of 34 lt of sugar equivalent into ethanol. Last year, the country produced 311.92 lt of sugar after a diversion of about 20 lt for ethanol production.

ISMA, in a statement, said as per its estimates and reports from sugar mills , sugar sales by the end of April 2022 have been at 160.05 lt against 152.61 lt in the corresponding period a year ago.

The domestic sugar sales quota released by the government up to June is higher by 5.5 lt that a year ago. ISMA estimates domestic sugar consumption in the current season at 275 lt (265.55 lt). 

Increase export quota 

Considering an opening stock of about 82 lt as of October 1, 2021, with 275 lt domestic consumption, 100 lt of exports, and the estimated 360 lt output, the closing stock as of September 30, 2022 is likely to be at 67 lt, sufficient for three months of domestic consumption. 

ISMA President Aditya Jhunjhunwala told BusinessLine,“ISMA in its Committee meeting reviewed the sugar production from 350-360 lakh tonnes, mainly due to higher cane availability in Maharashtra, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. As the sugar production is estimated to be higher now at 360 lakh tonnes, we expect consumption to be at 275 lakh tonnes, leaving a closing balance of about 67 lakh tonnes. With the estimate of higher production, government should allow the industry to export another 10 lakh tonnes in the current season. This will leave sufficient balance of stocks for 2.5 months of sugar consumption.” 

He said in the earlier export order released for the sugar mills dated June 6, out of the applications for exporting 17 lt, the release orders were issued only for 8 lt.

“The industry requests the government granting an additional 10 lakh tonnes of export order for sugar mills alone, instead of giving it to the traders/exporters, to fulfil export commitments,” he said.  

During the 2021-22 sugar season, 522 mills started crushing operations against 506 mills operated last year. About 352.37 lt of sugar have been produced till June 6 against 307.41 lt produced in the previous year at the same time. 

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