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UAE bans exports of Indian wheat

Abu Dhabi will use grain supply for domestic use only

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The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has introduced a four-month halt to exports and re-exports of wheat and wheat flour produced in India, state news agency WAM reported on Wednesday, citing the country’s Economy Ministry.

The Gulf nation says it is seeking to secure domestic supplies due to interruptions to global trade flows. The resolution applies to all wheat varieties: hard, ordinary, and soft wheat, as well as wheat spelt flour.

‚ÄúCompanies wishing to export/re-export wheat and wheat flour varieties of Indian origin, which were imported into the country before May 13, must submit a request to the ministry to obtain permission to export,‚ÄĚ it said, adding that India had approved exports of wheat to the UAE for domestic consumption only.

India banned wheat exports a month ago, except to countries backed by pre-existing letters of credit and those seeking to ensure food security. Since then, India has allowed shipments of 469,202 tons of wheat.

Read more: Wheat prices hit record high after Indian export ban

India is the world’s second biggest wheat producer, but accounts for less than 1% of the global wheat trade. It keeps a lot of it to provide subsidised food for the poor.

But just before announcing the ban, India was aiming to boost exports by shipping a record 10 million tonnes of wheat this year – compared with just two million last year.

The latest restrictions introduced by both nations came amid extreme disruptions in global food supplies, which have been exacerbated by the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Both countries are key global wheat exporters.

Read more: 180,000 tons of wheat approved for purchase from Russia

The UAE and India signed a broad trade and investment pact in February, which is known as the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Trade Agreement (CEPA). This seeks to cut all tariffs on the countries’ goods and aims to increase their annual trade to $100 billion within five years. It took effect on May 1.

RT with additional input by GVS News Desk

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