India has announced it will extend its tariff cut on lentils to the end of the year, as the country is experimenting with a domestic shortage of these pulses.
This means that a lower rate of 10 percent (rather than the 33pc in place earlier in the year) will continue in place.
While Australian pulse producers broadly welcomed the news, it is expected it will not necessarily favor Aussie pulse exporters. Instead, it is likely to be Canadian exporters, the other primary seller to India, that does the most business. This mainly because the new Australian lentil harvest will start by the end of November. If India doesn't extend the period, there will not be enough time to take over this opportunity.
India is generally one of Australia's leading buyers of lentils, purchasing up to 30pc of our exports in some years. Volumes to India have slowed markedly in recent years as the tariffs, implemented in December 2017, made sales difficult, with other buyers, such as Bangladesh, purchasing more of our lentils.
The Indian government announced an extension on lowered tariffs for Canadian lentils until the end of the year from the original date of October 31. Tariffs on Canadian lentils will remain at 10%, down from the usual 30%, marking the third time this year that Canadian lentils are subject to this rate. While this is good news for Canadian producers, a shortage of shipping containers puts stress on the country's ability to meet export demand.