India has exported 0.95 mt sugar in this marketing year
India has exported 0.95 million tonnes of sugar so far in the ongoing 2015-16 marketing year, industry body ISMA on Wednesday said expressing concerns over slow pace of shipments due to fall in global prices. Sugar production in the world’s second biggest producing country has reached 17.33 million tonnes (MT) till February 15 of the 2015-16 marketing year (October-September), up by 3.64 per cent from 16.72 MT in the year-ago period, it said in a statement.
ISMA has revised the sugar output estimate downward by 1 MT to 26 MT for this year, which is in line with government’s projections but lower than 28.3 MT that was achieved in the 2014-15 marketing year. “Around 9,50,000 tonnes of sugar has been dispatched by sugar mills across the country for exports against the quota fixed by the government,” Indian Sugar Mills Association (ISMA) said.
With a fall in global prices, the pace of contracts for further exports has slowed down. Besides, almost all mills are facing difficulties in servicing the bank debts as well as in payment of cane price to farmers, it said. The government has made it mandatory for mills to export 4 million tonnes of sugar in the 2015-16 marketing year.
As per the latest data released by ISMA, there has been higher sugar output so far this year even as 39 out of 511 mills closed operations early. It said 33 sugar mills in Maharashtra, 4 mills in Karnataka and 1 sugar mill each in Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh, have closed their crushing operations for the current year.
The sugar output in Maharasthra, the country’s leading sugar producing state, declined by 3.5 per cent to 6.27 MT in the October-February period of this marketing year as against 6.5 MT in the year-ago period. The production in Uttar Pradesh, the country’s second biggest sugar producing state, rose to 4.55 MT from 4.22 MT, while the output in Karnataka jumped to 3.22 MT as compared to 2.85 MT in the said period, last year.
The sugar production in Gujarat rose to 0.80 MT in the first four and half months of the current year from 0.72 MT in the year-ago period, while in Punjab, the output improved marginally to 0.35 MT from 0.31 MT in the said period. According to ISMA, sugar production is estimated to be about 26 MT this year, which is sufficient to meet the domestic requirement.