Saturday, July 13

India provides a unique allocation of white rice to Malaysia

The Indian government made an announcement on the approval of exporting 170,000 metric tonnes of Non-Basmati white rice to Malaysia as a special gesture signifying the strong friendship between the two nations.

This decision follows a formal request from the Malaysian government for a special quota of white rice on a government-to-government basis, reflecting the deepening strategic partnership and robust bilateral relations between India and Malaysia, especially in the field of food and agriculture.

The official communication regarding India’s decision to allocate white rice to Malaysia was conveyed by India’s External Affairs Minister, Dr. S. Jaishankar, during a telephone conversation with his Malaysian counterpart, Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Dr. Zambry Abdul Kadir.

Zambry expressed his gratitude to Jaishankar and the Indian government for their support to Malaysia, particularly considering the prevailing circumstances in the country.

In early October, discussions were initiated between Indian and Malaysian government representatives to address issues related to the rice export restrictions imposed by India, as reported by the New Straits Times on October 2. Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim also engaged in discussions with India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi concerning this matter.

India, the world’s largest rice exporter, had previously imposed a ban on the export of non-Basmati white rice and introduced a 20% tax on parboiled rice, which was seen as a measure to safeguard its domestic rice supply earlier this year.

In a recent development, seven countries, including Malaysia, were granted exemptions to import white rice from India despite the existing ban. These countries include Nepal, the Philippines, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, the Republic of Guinea, and Seychelles.

Moreover, in August, India had permitted rice exports to Singapore, Mauritius, and Bhutan.

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