Colombo: Sri Lanka has contracted to import 75,000 metric tonnes of non-basmati rice from India to meet its immediate requirement.
“We have contracted to import of 75,000 tonnes of superfine non-basmati Pooni rice and have been told to complete the shipment by December by exporters in India,” Essential Food Importers Association president S P Swamy told PTI.
Although rice is Sri Lanka’s staple food and paddy farming is the livelihood of an estimated 1.8 million families, rising temperature and heavy rains have damaged rice crop in recent months.
The Indian Government lifted the ban on export of superior quality non-basmati rice priced over $425 a tonne on 26 October after exporters protested.
“We will be contracting rice imports from India at around $425 a tonne,” Swamy said.
The ban imposed on 9 October had halted shipments and jeopardised their commitments. Cargoes worth Rs500 crore were stuck at port warehouses due to the change in rules, Indian rice exporter Lal Mahal Basmati had said in a statement.