The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has abolished all restrictions on export of pulses to allow farmers to seek remunerative prices for their output.
“Opening of exports of all types of pulses will help the farmers dispose of their products at remunerative prices and encourage them to expand the area of sowing,” said Law, Electronics and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad after a Cabinet meeting. India produced 23 million tonnes of pulses in 2016-17 and the government has set a target to produce 22.90 million tonnes in 2017-18. The Centre has acquired 20 million tonnes at market rates or minimum support price.
While lifting restrictions on exports, the Cabinet’s economic panel decided that the export and import policy for pulses will be reviewed by a committee of top officials, which would also be empowered to consider changes in import duties and impose quantitative restrictions on trade based on domestic and international production and demand trends.
The committee will be chaired by the Secretary in the Department of Food & Public Distribution and will include the Secretaries in the Ministries of Commerce, Agriculture, Revenue and Consumer Affairs. “It is expected that pulses production will be sustained and our import dependence on pulses will come down substantially. This is also likely to provide higher levels of protein to the population and work towards nutritional security,” said a government statement.
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