No proposal as of now to increase sugar export quota from 60 lakh tonnes: Chopra

NEW DELHI, Mar 3: The Government is not considering any proposal as of now to increase the sugar export quota from the present 60 lakh tonnes for this marketing year ending September, Union Food Secretary Sanjeev Chopra said.
The food ministry has allowed 60 lakh tonnes of sugar exports for the current 2022-23 marketing year (October-September).
The country had exported around 110 lakh tonnes, an all-time high, of sugar in the 2021-22 marketing year.
“The sugar production is going down by about 9 lakh tonnes, that is our estimate from the previous year. So keeping that in view, as of now there is no proposal to increase the export quota,” Chopra said on the sidelines of an event on Thursday late evening.
When asked that the Ministry was to assess domestic production this month before deciding on further exports of sweetener, he said, “The production figures have come down. We have to see this buffer stock requirement first. And once that is met, then only we can take a call.”
The secretary asserted that “as of now there are no proposals for any further export quota.”
Mills have already contracted to export almost the entire 60 lakh tonnes of sugar that have been permitted by the Government. A large quantity has already been shipped.
Last month, the food secretary had said that sugar production is estimated to be lower in the 2022-23 marketing year because of bad weather in some producing states.
Recently, Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA) said that sugar production is estimated to fall 5 per cent in the current marketing year to 340 lakh tonnes as more quantity of sugarcane juice is being diverted for the production of ethanol.
Sugar production stood at 358 lakh tonnes in the 2021-22 marketing year.
There will be an estimated diversion of 45 lakh tonnes of sweetener towards ethanol manufacturing.
Sugarcane juice/syrup and B-molasses are being diverted to ethanol making.
In the previous 2021-22 marketing year, 32 lakh tonnes of sweetener was diverted towards manufacturing of ethanol for blending with petrol.
The actual sugar production in Maharashtra is estimated to decline to 121 lakh tonnes in 2022-23 from 137 lakh tonnes in the previous year.
Uttar Pradesh will see a marginal decline to 101 lakh tonnes from 102 lakh tonnes, while Karnataka may witness a decline to 56 lakh tonnes from 60 lakh tonnes.
Between October and February 15, of this 2022-23 marketing year, ISMA has reported that the country’s sugar production rose 3 per cent to 228.4 lakh tonnes. (PTI)