’Wheat export will check further fall in domestic prices’

’Wheat export will check further fall in domestic prices’

New Delhi: Flour millers on Friday hailed the government’s decision to lift a four year-old ban on wheat exports, saying this would not only prevent a further decline in domestic retail prices, but would also enable the export of high protein varieties to the Middle East.

On Thursday, the Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM) on Food decided to lift the ban on wheat exports, subject to a ceiling of two million tonnes. The ban was imposed in early 2007.

“Despite record procurement by the government, there is still so much wheat in the market. The prices have fallen to below support price in some states like Uttar Pradesh," M K Dattaraj, a former president of the Roller Flour Mills Federation, told PTI.

“The decision to allow exports will arrest a further decline in domestic rates," he added.

Dattaraj noted that “high protein (wheat) varieties of Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan will find some market in the Middle East". In addition, he said some quantities could be exported to Bangladesh from eastern UP.

The government procured a record 28 million tonnes of wheat at 1,170 per quintal in the 2011-12 marketing year (April-March).

In the national capital, prices of wheat dara -- used by flour millers -- stood at 1,145-1,150 per quintal on Thursday.

As per Wholesale Price Index data released on Thursday, wheat rates fell by 1.04% year-on-year in the week ended 27 August.