New Delhi: Wheat output in India, the world’s second-biggest producer of the grain, may exceed 75 million tonnes (mt) this year, the nation’s biggest private farm goods exporter said.
“The crop in Punjab and Haryana is excellent,” said Atul Chaturvedi, president of Adani Enterprises Ltd., at a conference in Mumbai.
The forecast echoes that of Union agriculture minister Sharad Pawar.
A bigger wheat crop is crucial to efforts by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s government to cool inflation that’s running at a three-year high before next year’s general elections. Wheat and rice are the best-performing commodities in the past year on the Rogers International Commodity Index.
India’s wheat output, second only to that of China, may drop 1 mt to 74.81mt in the March-April harvest because of a drop in acreage, the agriculture ministry said in February. The country may import up to 2mt to build stockpiles, Chaturvedi said. Imports were 1.8mt in 2007.
“The government may import just to maintain stocks in an election year,” Chaturvedi added.