Apeda suggests measures to up agro commodities export

Written by ASHOK B SHARMA | New Delhi, Oct 21 | Updated: Oct 22 2007, 04:07am hrs
The Agriculture and Processed Food Export Development Authority (Apeda), with a view to boost export of agro commodities, has suggested to the government a series of measures aimed at simplification of procedures for documentation and regulatory clearances at the ports, subsidising freight cost for all perishables, and an inland transport subsidy for perishables.

Total agro exports monitored by Apeda increased by 12.42% in value terms in 2006-07 to be at $45,550.30 million. However, exports of pulses, dairy, poultry products, processed fruits, juices, spirit, beverages, basmati rice, and wheat declined. Basmati rice export declined from $687.39 million in 2005-06 to $617.40 million in 2006-07. The reasons cited for the fall are due to high paddy prices and withdrawal of services of two shipping lines to West Asia. Poultry exports suffered on account of Avian flu in the country. Exports of pulses, dairy products, and wheat suffered because of the government imposed export ban. Apeda has suggested the need to have a consistent policy.

One of the major constraints that exporters suffer is that of complicated procedures for documentation and clearances at ports. We had set up an inter-ministerial panel to simplify procedures. The panel's recommendations have been sent to the law ministry for vetting. A big congregation of overseas retailers and aggregators is to take place in 2008,said the outgoing chairman of Apeda, KS Money.