Speech on Agricultural-Export-Trade-Liberalization

Agricultural Exports:
Agricultural exports 
by the very nature are sensitive as they have a direct bearing on the domestic price situation as well as demands of the agro-based industry. However, India has always strived to strike a balance in securing interests of the farmers and consumers. On account of bumper harvest last year, export of all agricultural commodities was freely allowed. Export of non-basmati rice, wheat and wheat and wheat products was banned in 2007. Wheat products have been allowed for exports since 2009 and non-basmati rice and wheat exports have been allowed in September 2011. As a result, India has become the largest rice exporter in the world and the second largest wheat exporter. India has exported more than 6 million MTs of wheat since September 2011 and at present except pulses and edible oils, export of all agricultural commodities is freeIndia has also taken series of measures to promote export of Organic Agricultural produce and in order to provide a predictability for long-term contracting, India has taken a view to exempt export of certain processed and value added products to be freely exportable even in the eventuality of a restriction on exports of basic farm produce. For instance export of cheese, ghee, butter, casein, casein products are exempted from export ban even in the event of a ban on export of milk and milk products.

Trade Liberalization:

In the last 4 years, India has aggressively pursued a policy of trade liberalization and engaged with all dynamic parts of the world. India has concluded comprehensive economic partnership agreement witASEAN after signing of Services and Investment at the Commemorative Summit last year. Similar agreements had already been finalized with Korea, Japan and Malaysia.

 The negotiations for the India-EU BTIA are progressing well and both sides have given a clear mandate to negotiators for concluding a balanced and fair agreement at the earliest. Indian Government is confident that over the next couple of months,India should see intensification of this process and hope that India will be able to arrive at a broad understanding soon