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India rises to feed China

China is set to increase its rice imports from India

China is set to increase its rice imports from India. Beijing has already imported 4.76 lakh tons of 100 per cent broken rice from India between April and July this year. India’s total rice exports to China during the current financial year could be over 1 million tonnes.

Sample this. According to the All India Rice Exporters’ Association, in 2018-19 India exported 951 tonnes but the figure shot up in 2020-21 to touch 33,1571 tonnes.

Heavy floods in China have affected foodgrain production. Large parts of crops were damaged due to heavy rains and flooding last year as well as this year.

Vinod Kaul, executive director of the association, told India Narrative that India, which will be in the rice harvest period next month, is ready to increase exports.

“Countries like China, Vietnam need a lot of broken rice, which is not only the staple grain but it is widely used for making rice wine and noodles and also the grain serves as bird feed. While these countries produce rice on their own, their requirements are also large,” Kaul said.

Also read:  India's rice exports in 2020-21 is the highest ever by any country, despite Covid-19 blues

China’s Henan province – the second largest rice producer in the country – witnessed severe floods this year. This has brought significant damage to crops—not just rice but other agri-products such as maize and sweet potatoes. The province accounts for more than one-tenth of the country's total rice output.

While there have been several reports suggesting that India’s rice exports may take a hit, Kaul said that during the April to June period India’s rice exports increased by 112 per cent over the corresponding period in the previous year. However, there has been “some slowdown in exports growth” but despite that India’s outbound shipment of the grain in the first four months of this financial year stood at 74 per cent. 

Besides China, several other countries including Bangladesh and Vietnam have also been importing rice from India.

Vietnam also imported 3.81 lakh tonnes of broken rice from India for the first time during this period.