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Fall in meal exports, rising oil imports to impact soya acreage.

Date: 05-07-2016
Subject: Fall in meal exports, rising oil imports to impact soya acreage
Ahmedabad, July 4: Insufficient government support to rein in cheap imports of soyabean oil, costly exports of oilmeal and delayed rains in growing regions may shrink soyabean acreage this year.

Even as sowing has just begun in many parts of the country, the area under soyabean last year (kharif 2015) was estimated at 110.656 lakh hectares, which may fall owing to lower returns from the crop.

“We had seen over 110 lakh hectares (lh) under soyabean. But the current scenario of cheap import of soyabean oils and costly exports of soyameal from India will adversely affect the prospects for the soyabean crop. We may end up losing some area under soyabean,” said Davish Jain, Chairman, Soyabean Processors Association in India (SOPA).

According to Jain, the export of soyameal in June 2016 stood at 17,934 tonnes as compared to 16,647 tonnes in June 2015, showing a marginal increase of 7.73 per cent over the same period last year.

However, in the three-month period from this April to June, exports fell by 61.74 per cent to 40,634 tonnes as compared to 106,209 tonnes in the same period last year.

Similarly, for the oil year (October-September), total exports till June stood at 226,404 tonnes (655,837 tonnes), SOPA data revealed.

With the monsoon delayed in growing regions, sowing has been sluggish in most parts. Jain further mentioned that the increase in oil imports coupled with the decline in the soyabean crop would prove counter-productive for the indigenous processing industry.

“In 2015, India imported about 3 million tonnes of soyabean oil, which is likely to be higher at 3.7 million tonnes in 2016. Also the cost of imports has fallen from the earlier $1,280 per tonne to around $750 in 2016. The Centre’s supports in terms of duty hikes have not served the desired purpose,” said Jain.

Jain anticipates India’s soyabean production to be at a record low at around 10 lakh tonnes, from around 17-18 lakh tonnes in 2011-12.

Source : thehindubusinessline.com

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