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India Lifts Restriction On Onion Exports, Forces Least Product Cost



The central government has decided to lift the ban on onion exports amid the Lok Sabha elections. But it has also imposed two strict conditions. Onion exports will not be at a rate less than $550 per tonne and 40 percent export duty will be applicable on exports.

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According to the notification issued by DGFT, MEP (minimum export price) of $550 per tonne will be applicable on onion exports. No exporter will export onions at a lower price.

Earlier on Friday, the central government had also issued an order to impose a 40 percent export duty on onions. With these two conditions, onion exports will not be possible at a price of less than Rs 60 per kilogram. It has been decided to lift the ban on onion exports especially due to the resentment of onion farmers of Maharashtra. Due to the ban on exports for the last five months, onion producers and traders have suffered huge losses. This has become a major political issue in Maharashtra. The BJP and its allies in the onion belt of Maharashtra may have to bear the brunt of this. Removing the ban on onion export will provide relief to farmers and traders, but at the same time, questions will be raised about the two conditions imposed. Onion is a big issue in at least a dozen seats of Maharashtra.

The central government banned onion export on 8 December 2023 to control onion prices in the domestic market. Then, on March 22, the ban was extended indefinitely. Recently, the central government approved the export of 2000 tonnes of white onion mainly grown in Gujarat, due to which there was a lot of resentment in Maharashtra. Ultimately the government had to decide to lift the ban on onion export.

Meanwhile, recently government issued a press lease, which said that 99,150-tonne onion was exported to six countries, which turned out to be an old announcement. In this regard, Maharashtra leaders accused the BJP of misleading the farmers.

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