News / Asia

India’s Rice Exports to Iran Rise

An Indian farmer harvests rice crop in a field on the outskirts of Jammu, India, October 30, 2012.
An Indian farmer harvests rice crop in a field on the outskirts of Jammu, India, October 30, 2012.
Anjana Pasricha
India’s rice exports to Iran have been rising since Tehran agreed to accept payment in India’s local currency for its oil. India wants to use this money to fund its exports to Iran, but efforts to step up trade between the two countries continue to face several hurdles due to Western sanctions on Tehran over its nuclear program.
   
A delegation from the All India Rice Exporters Association is getting ready to visit Tehran in early April to see how to strengthen business. The visit comes amid a recent surge in exports of rice to Iran. From April to December last year, Iran imported more than $725 million worth of rice - up 20 percent from the previous year.
  
India has been one of Iran’s biggest rice suppliers for many years. But business grew after New Delhi began to pay Tehran for oil partly in its local currency. These rupee resources, which are piling up in an Indian bank, are being used to fund Indian exports to Tehran.
 
Rice traders say the arrangement has ended the uncertainty over payments that arose due to Western sanctions on Iran.
 
"There are some issues still there, but people are aggressive in selling, and you see if the buyer makes money, he is a little more aggressive to sell. The rice prices have gone up in India, and Indian exporters are making good money," said Vijay Setia, who heads the All India Rice Exporters Association.

Rice traders are not the only ones eyeing the Iranian market. Indian pharmaceutical companies are also trying to increase exports to Iran amid a reported shortage of several medicines in that country. Sugar, tea, and iron and steel are some of the other items which India sells to Tehran.
   
However, India’s exports are worth far less than its oil imports from Iran, which amount to about $1 billion a month. New Delhi wants to increase trade with Iran - partly so that the rupees which are accumulating in India for oil payments can be used to finance exports.
 
But a refusal by many insurers to give coverage to shipments to Tehran is posing fresh hurdles.

Rafique Ahmed, president of the Federation of Indian Export Organization, which has been urging Indian companies to step up exports to Iran, says trade with Iran increased by 11 percent last year, but is not growing as much as expected.
   
"Definitely the sanctions are creating a problem because not everybody wants to take a risk of not having insurance and everything. So it is not increasing as much as we wanted it to increase," he said.  
  
There are also fears that India’s oil imports from Iran could face further problems because domestic insurance companies have expressed concerns about giving coverage to refineries which process the oil.
  
New Delhi, which has friendly relations with Iran, is its second biggest customer for oil, although oil imports have dropped by about 20 percent in response to pressure from the United States.

You May Like

Lebanese Media Unite to Support Palestinians in Gaza

Joint newscast billed as Arab world’s first unified news bulletin in support of Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip More

Photogallery Australian PM Alleges ‘Coverup’ at MH17 Crash Site

Meanwhile, Russia's ambassador to Malaysia denies plane's black boxes were opened before they were handed over to Malaysian officials More

Despite Advances in AIDS Treatment, Stigma Lingers

Leading immunologist tells VOA that stigma is often what prevents those infected with disease from seeking treatment More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Formi
X
July 22, 2014 10:26 AM
Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Chicago’s Argonne Lab Developing Battery of the Future

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science awarded a $120 million grant to a new technology center focused on battery development - headquartered at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago, Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there scientists are making the next technological breakthroughs in energy storage.
Video

Video In NW Pakistan, Army Offensive Causes Massive Number of Displaced

Pakistan’s army offensive in North Waziristan has resulted in the large-scale displacement of the local population. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from northwest Pakistan where authorities say around 80 percent of the estimated 1 million internally displaced persons [IDPs] have settled in Bannu district, while much of the remaining 20 percent are scattered in nearby cities.
Video

Video Kurdish Peshmerga Force Secures Kirkuk, Its Oil

The Kurdistan regional government has sent its Peshmerga troops into the adjacent province of Kirkuk to drive out insurgents, and to secure the area's rich oil fields. By doing this, the regional government has added a fourth province to the three it officially controls. The oil also provides revenue that could make an independent Kurdistan economically strong. VOA’s Jeffrey Young went out with the Peshmerga and filed this report.
Video

Video Malaysia Reeling: Second Air Disaster in Four Months

Malaysia is reeling from the second air disaster in four months involving the country’s flag carrier. Flight 340 vanished in March and despite an extensive search, no debris has been found. And on Thursday, Flight 17, likely hit by a surface-to-air missile, came apart over eastern Ukraine. The two incidents together have left more than 500 people dead. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Kuala Lumpur.

AppleAndroid