India plans to send a delegation to Iran to discuss ways for resuming exports of its Basmati rice to the Islamic Republic, the president of All India Rice Exporters Association said.
Mohinder Pal Jindal said the delegation comprising government officials and exporters will travel to Iran on January 27-29, The Economic Times reported.
He added that New Delhi is hopeful that Iran will lift the ban on imports of basmati rice from India that has been in place for the past four months.
“We have to counter other countries’ efforts because our share in Iran’s imports has fallen drastically,” said an Indian government official on condition of anonymity.
Iran has been one of the largest importers of Indian basmati rice in recent years. But in 2015-16, basmati rice exports from India to Iran almost halved to $571 million from $1.1 billion in the previous financial year.
In the first half of this fiscal year, basmati rice exports from India to Iran amounted to $356 million.
Both India and Pakistan have claimed geographical indication on aromatic long grained basmati rice, saying the variety is unique to the respective countries. Uruguay is another rice exporter to Iran.
(Source: Tasnim, under Creative Commons licence)