New Delhi: Sugarcane producers in north India are expected to suffer with the proposed new sugar export rules. Farmers are already struggling with sugarcane payments. With the changed rules, sugar mills of Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab and Haryana will be unable to export. However, new rules will benefit the sugar mills of west and south India.

The Food Ministry has recently prepared a proposal for 10 lakh tonne sugar export rules amendment. Under the current rules, a quota for exports is given to all sugar mills on the basis of productions. But according to the new rules, quotas will be given on “First come first serve” basis. Along with that, restriction has been imposed on the sales of allocated quota.

Till now, the sugar mills of north India used to sell its export quotas to bigger mills of western India. Because the north Indian sugar mills were far away from the ports, it used to sell its export quotas to mills in western and south Indian mills. Now, with the new rules it will not be able to sell its export quotas. The sugar mills of north India has dues of Rs 5,000 crore to pay for sugarcane. These mills were planning to make payments to farmers by the earnings from exports.

The head of Dwarikesh Sugar Industries, Gautam Morarka has said that the sugar mills of north India are struggling due to the big gap between production cost and market price. In such scenario, taking such steps will jeopardize their hopes of sorting out their finances.

The owners of sugar mills has met with the Food Minister K V Thomas and requested that the earlier system be continued. The Centre has recently allowed additional sugar export of 10 lakh tonne. 20 lakh tonne sugar has already been exported.