September 11: Rice traders of Bara and Parsa industrial corridor have said the 20 percent customs duty on export of rice and paddy imposed by India would have direct impact on the Nepali market.
Organizing a press conference in Birgunj on Friday, the Birgunj Chamber of Commerce and Industry said that India recently fixed 20 percent customs duty on the export of paddy and rice. Prior to this, there wasn’t any customs duty on the export of rice and paddy.
The chamber said that the 20 percent customs duty imposed by India on rice and paddy export will hit the industries, consumers and the economy of Nepal.
Nepal Rice, Oil, Lentil Industries Association’s President Dr Subodh Gupta said India's latest decision is not fair for the industries, traders, consumers and the market of Nepal. Gupta is also the president of Birgunj Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Another rice trader Suresh Rungta expressed concern that the consumers would be hit hardest due to the customs tariff imposed by India on paddy and rice export.
Gupta was worried that this drastic decision of India might lead to a situation in which the rice mills in Nepal will be closed and called on the government to address the problem at the earliest.
Nepal has been importing rice worth over Rs 8 billion annually from India. Nepal imported 550,000 metric tonnes of paddy, 520,000 metric tonnes of rice and 50,000 metric tonnes of rice grits from India last year alone.
There are around 2,500 rice industries registered across the country and half of these are already closed. Even those rice industries which are operating are not operating in full capacity due to various reasons. The rice industries of Nepal have been producing 40 percent rice and the rest of the demand is met through imports from India. -- RSS