Govt extends pulses import window till December 31


This could result in a severe shortage in domestic production.

In order to ensure adequate supplies of pulses, the Centre has issued a notification extending the imports period for tur, moong and urad up to December 31, 2021. Import consignments of these items with the Bill of Landing issued on or before December 31,2021, will be allowed by the Customs till January 31, 2022. Earlier, the import policy of free imports was to expire on October 31 with arrivals allowed till November 31, 2021.

Welcoming the government’s decision, Bimal Kothari, vice-chairman, India Pulses and Grains Association (IPGA), said that the disruption in monsoon for about three weeks between June and July, compounded by excessive rainfall, is expected to hamper the production of tur, urad and moong this year. This could result in a severe shortage in domestic production.

The government, taking early cognizance of this, has taken a proactive step by extending the import window which will ensure adequate imports of these pulses to tide over the ongoing festive season till the time the new domestic crop arrives in the market, Kothari said. This will also help stabilise the prices during the festival season, he added.

In a recent video conference with commerce secretary BVR Subrahmanayam, IPGA had also requested for an extension in the arrival deadline for pulses imports from Myanmar and East Africa by 60 and 90 days, respectively. This was primarily because the disruption in global logistics has caused severe shortage of containers as well as vessels, the association said.

Tur is harvested in East Africa around August and shipments start in September. However, due to non-availability of containers as well as vessels connecting to India from transit ports, these cargoes are taking far more than the normal sailing time.

Traders are worried that the extended sailing time would result in cargo reaching India post November 30, 2021, which was the initial deadline. With the arrival dead line being extended till December 31 and arrival before January 31, 2022, importers now have ample time to procure and ship the pulses to India,” the association said.

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