According to the reports it has been stated that the government of India will now allow seed-quality rice exports with license permits. The Director General of Foreign Trade revealed that export of rice seed quality has been moved from ‘Free’ to ‘Restricted’ category and the exports will be permitted under licence subject to certain conditions such as submission of proof of dealer in seeds; declaration regarding the export consignment of seeds with chemical treatment and is not fit for human consumption. In addition, the export packets have to be labeled with the above declaration.
Further, in this regard the development has been welcomed by the exporters as it will help to restrict exports of basmati rice seeds as well as to prevent any attempts by other countries to patent basmati rice. It has also been informed that it was a long pending demand of the industry. Since, now the issue of basmati rice is under Geographical Indications (GI) tag and is pending in the court, thus, the free export of rice seeds was of great concern because other countries might grow the aromatic rice and claim patent over it, as it was quoted by the former President of the All India Rice Exporters Association (AIREA).