India’s wheat diet alleviates crisis. Then banned exports

“We already have enough food for our people, but it seems that our farmers have made arrangements to feed the world,” Modi said Said In April. We are ready to send relief from tomorrow.
Is the second largest wheat producer in the world after China The talk was already going on. In the 12 months to March, India monetized rising global prices, with exports a The record is 7 million metric tons Of grain. This is 250% more than the previous year’s volumes. It has also set record export targets for the coming year.
Now, those lofty targets have been dropped and wheat has been exported Prohibited As life threatening Heat waves In South Asia Stunt output and push local prices to record highs.
The move came as a shock to international markets on Monday – just days after India assured the world it was unprecedented. Heat wave Can not Impact Its export plans. Global wheat prices rose 6%, with futures trading in Chicago reaching $ 12.4 a bushel, the highest level in two months. The future of wheat declined slightly on Tuesday, but has risen almost 50% since the war began.
Although India is a major wheat producer – the country is expected to produce over 100 million metric tons this year – most grains are used to feed its 1.3 billion population. With the government’s own consent, the country “Not in the top 10 places Wheat exporters. ”

But the warning of its export embargo underscores the weakness of the global food supply.

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How did we get here?

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine One has contributed Historical shock The World Bank said last month that it will continue to target global commodity markets by the end of 2024. Food prices are expected to rise 22.9% this year, driven by a 40% rise in wheat prices.
That’s because Ukraine and Russia are together Account About 14% of global wheat production and 29% of all wheat exports. Major Exports As Odessa and its other Black Sea ports are besieged by Russian forces, agricultural exports to Ukraine, including about 20 million tons of grain, are stuck.

According to the US Department of Agriculture, Ukraine is one of the top five global exporters of various major agricultural products, including corn, wheat and barley. It is a leading exporter of both sunflower oil and food.

But before the fighting began in Europe the food situation was dire. Supply chains and unpredictable weather patterns – often as a result of climate change – have already pushed food prices to their highest level in a decade. Affordability was also an issue after the epidemic left millions out of work.

The UN estimates that the number of people on the brink of famine will rise from 27 million in 2019 to 44 million. World Food Program Said in March.

After Modi’s promise, many vulnerable countries took over the goods from India.

“Indian wheat exports This year is very important in the context of the Russia-Ukraine crisis, “said Oscar Dijagra, a senior grain and oilseeds analyst at Rabobank.

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“The ban will reduce the availability of global wheat for export in 2022 and provide support for global wheat prices,” he added.

New Delhi’s U-turn policy on wheat has already been met Review from G7 membersThe system of some of the largest economies in the world.

On Monday, US Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield said she hoped Indian authorities would “reconsider that position.”

“We encourage countries not to restrict exports because we think any restrictions on exports will increase food shortages.” She said at a press conference In New York.

Rising food security

India has maintained that restrictions are necessary for its own food security and price control. Annual inflation in Asia’s third-largest economy peaked in April, the highest level in nearly eight years, some traders say. Prompted export ban.

The government said the restrictions did not apply “in cases where pre-pledges were made by private traders” and did not apply to countries seeking goods “to meet their food security needs.”

On Thursday, April 28, 2022, an Indian farmer picks up a harvest of wheat in a field on the outskirts of Jammu, India.

According to Dijagra, these exceptions should be considered “good news”, but the barrier makes it difficult to assess the impact on global trade.

He added that the “severity of the impact” of the ban “still depends on the amount of Indian wheat exports allowed by the government and the volume of wheat production from other global wheat producers”.

Some analysts in India say that allowing unrestricted exports is a bad idea at first.

“We do not know what will happen to India’s climate,” Devinder Sharma, an agricultural policy expert from India, told CNN Business.

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According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), India is one of the countries most likely to be affected by the effects of the climate crisis.

If crops are destroyed due to unpredictable weather, India will face food shortages and “stand with a begging bowl,” Sharma added.

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India is not the only country looking inward And restricts agricultural exports.

In April, Indonesia began to restrict exports Palm oil, A common ingredient found in many foods, cosmetics and household items in the world. It is the best product manufacturer in the world.
Just a month ago, Egypt The Arab world has banned the export of key food items such as wheat, flour, pulses and beans amid growing concerns about food stocks in the world’s most populous state.

“As inflation is already rising in Asia, the risks are shifting towards greater food security, but these measures could exacerbate global food price pressures,” Nomura analyst Sonal Verma said in a statement on Saturday.

He added that the impact of India’s wheat embargo would be “proportionately felt by low-income developing countries”.

Nomura said Bangladesh was India’s largest exporter of wheat, followed by Sri Lanka, the United Arab Emirates, Indonesia, Yemen, the Philippines and Nepal.

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