Export of sugar 'banned' for up to 3 years by Indian government
Such pressures would further push up mills' prices to domestic wholesalers and bulk consumers.
"It is difficult for India to export even in coming years, due to higher production costs. If it rises, then ultimately mills can't sell sugar below a certain level," said Mukesh Kuvadia, secretary of the Bombay Sugar Merchants Association.
Western Maharashtra and the southern cane-producing states of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu are reeling from a harsh drought that could drive sugar production in the 2013/14 season below consumption for the first time in four years.
Such scarcity would give farmers the upper hand in negotiating cane prices with mills next year.
Cane supplies will remain tight even in 2014/15 as drought slashes planting and affects crops, said Balasaheb Patil, chairman of the Sahyadri Co-operative Sugar Mill in Maharashtra.
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