New Delhi: Tea exports from India declined by 10% in May to 9.77 million kg on robust domestic prices and increased internal consumption even though production rose marginally.
Overseas shipment of tea dipped from 10.83 million kg in May last year. The exports dipped to 60.03 million kg since the beginning of the calender year 2009 from 73.66 million kg in the year-ago period, a senior Tea Board official said.
However, tea export has risen in value terms due to higher realisation. The overseas shipment of the commodity surged to Rs134.99 crore in May, compared with Rs111.94 crore in the same month last year, the official added.
Similarly, the export has shot up to Rs775.04 crore so far this calender year against Rs727.34 crore a year before.
Prices of Indian tea shot up to Rs138.13 per kg in May, compared with Rs103.35 a year before, while the average prices between January and May 2009 rose to Rs129.10 per kg from Rs98.74 in the year-ago period.
High prices in the local market, coupled with rising domestic demand, have made exports a less lucrative option, leading to a fall in volume, an industry official said. Tea prices are ruling at about Rs140 a kg in the domestic market.
Tea production in May rose to 71,374 tonnes from 70,267 tonnes a year before. However, output has declined to 215.84 million kg till May this year from 240.24 million kg in the same period last year.