New Delhi: Government has no immediate plans to cut further import duty on wheat to a zero level as overseas purchase of the grain still works out to be cheaper at the current customs duty level.
On September 23, import duty on wheat was reduced to 10 per cent from 25 per cent to boost supplies and check prices during Dusshera and Diwali festivals. "There was no pressure on domestic wheat prices during the festival period and prices are ruling stable.
So, there is no immediate plans to cut import duty on wheat to zero level," a senior government official told PTI. Also, wheat imports are still cheaper at the current level of import duty as international prices are sluggish in the wake of abundant global supplies, the official noted.
Meanwhile, flour millers have been demanding withdrawal of the import duty citing 8 million tonnes shortfall in the domestic output. So far, flour millers have imported about 11 lakh tonnes of wheat from Ukrain, Australia and France. More import deals are likely to be clinched in the coming days.
There is not much wheat stock in the state-run Food Coropration of India (FCI) as procurement was lower at 22.9million tonnes as against the target of 30.5 million tonnes set for the 2016-17 marketing year (April-March).
The private trade has projected wheat output in the 2015-16 crop year (July-June) to be at 86 million tonnes, which is much lower than the government's estimate of 93.50 million tonnes....