CCEA likely to consider add'l 5 MT wheat export tomorrow: Pawar

CCEA likely to consider add'l 5 MT wheat export tomorrow: Pawar New Delhi: The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs is likely to consider on Thursday the proposal to allow export of additional 5 million tonnes wheat from the government godowns to clear surplus stock ahead of arrival of new crop, Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar said on Wednesday.

"The proposal on wheat export is on the agenda of tomorrow's CCEA meeting. Let's see what will happen," Pawar told reporters on the sidelines of 'Krishi Vighyan Mela'.

The move is aimed at creating enough space to accommodate new wheat crop, which will be harvested from this month-end.

The proposal is also to permit recognised private traders to export the government-held wheat stocks along with state- run trading agencies such as MMTC, STC, PEC Ltd, sources said.

So far, the government has allowed export of 4.5 million tonnes (MT) through public sector trading agencies. Of this, about 2 MT has already been shipped in a price range of USD 295-330 a tonne.

The floor price will be determined by the inter- ministerial panel, headed by Commerce Secretary S R Rao.

Sources said that additional exports would ease storage pressure in Punjab, Haryana and Madhya Pradesh.

As on February 1, the wheat stock in the central pool was 30.80 MT, as against the actual requirement of 11.2 MT. Much of it is lying in these three states.

The wheat stock has piled up in the government godowns due to record procurement following bumper crop in the last two years.

The government is aiming to procure a record 44 MT in the 2013-14 marketing year starting April.

Wheat production touched all-time high of 94.88 MT in 2011-12. Production is estimated to be 92.30 MT this year.

PTI