According to the sources, it has been reported that there is a steady drop in the quantity of rice being exported from the Kakinada Port has remained a cause of concern for both the traders and the farmers. In this regard, it has been indicated that the rice is being exported to African countries from the Kakinada Anchorage Port, one of the oldest ports in the county, ever since the Centre lifted the ban on rice exports in 2011. Since East and West Godavari districts are considered the rice bowl of the State, there is no dearth of produce for the exports and the traders clinched deals with the foreign parties and shipped rice to the destinations.
Further, it has been observed that the quantum of rice being exported has been falling year by year owing to the tough competition from other rice producing countries and the global economic recession. According to the data, it has been reported that in the financial year 2012-13, the Anchorage exported 26.73 lakh metric tonnes to various African countries, which is a record even today. The quantum has come down to 22.67 lakh metric tonnes in 2013-14 and to 22.01 lakh metric tonnes in 2014-15. While, the recent bulletin of the Cocanada Chamber of Commerce indicated that 19.17 lakh metric tonnes of rice was being exported in the fiscal 2015-16 and further, it is not just rice, but all the exports have plummeted due to the global economic recession. The scenario remained same in all the ports and is applicable to almost all the commodities, as narrated by Mr Dantu Surya Rao, chairman of the chamber. Further, with regard to rice, it has been stated that the local traders are facing a tough competition from their counterparts from Thailand and Vietnam over the year.
Meanwhile, it has been noted that both the quality and price of the Indian rice are high in the International market which is probably; it is a price factor which is forcing the importers to look towards Thailand and Vietnam. The withdrawal of the Duty Entitlement Passbook (DEPB) system by the Customs department seems to be the major disappointment for the traders from the Government’s side. However, announcement of a few incentives may accelerate the exports in the days to come and it has been revealed that it is not just traders, but the farmers too are getting benefited from the exports. They can clear the stocks instantly, as the support guaranteed from the competitive market. As a result of the slowdown in exports, farmers are facing the challenge of buffer stocks and all the warehouses are filled with the produce, as told by a progressive farmer Mr Kovvuri Trinadha Reddy,