India's onion prices have surged due to a small supply and unpredictable weather conditions. The government imposed a 40% export tax and introduced a minimum export price (MEP), making onion exports more expensive. Despite these measures, domestic markets face high prices due to high demand and limited supply. The extended monsoon season has caused spoilage and wastage, leading to wastage. While onion prices are expected to fall in a month, export demand has reduced due to high costs and the MEP.
Due to India's recent increase in onion export tax rates, Bangladesh has resumed purchasing onions from Myanmar, leading to a 20% surge in domestic onion prices in Myanmar within a month. The price at trading stations reached its highest at USD 1.52/tael (MMK 3,200/tael) in Oct-23 and increased to USD 1.88/tael (MMK 3,950/tael) by Nov-23. Although prices have dropped recently to USD 1.76/tael (MMK 3,700/tael) on November 14, retail marketers still face a significant increase compared to the past. The price of onions, about USD 1.90/kg (MMK 4,000/kg) in the past, has now risen to USD 2.38/kg (MMK 5,000/kg). Myanmar onion producers and exporters are actively seeking more export opportunities to mitigate the impact of market fluctuations.
To effectively address the surge in onion prices, the Philippines is constructing nine cold storage facilities nationwide at approximately USD 721 (PHP 40 million), with a total expenditure of 374 million pesos (about 48.57 million yuan). These cold storage facilities will be donated to farmers' cooperatives. The Ministry of Agriculture aims to penalize cooperatives that sublease these facilities to middlemen. Additionally, the country will continue to crack down on onion smuggling and hoarding under the Agricultural Economic Disruption Act. Since 2018, 16 cold storage facilities have been built nationwide.
In the past three weeks, wholesale prices of onions in Uzbekistan have dropped by 18%, which is attributed to an increased supply on the domestic market. The wholesale prices are 1.7 times lower than last year's, standing at USD 0.15/kg (UZS 1,800/kg). The price decline results from a large onion harvest in Uzbekistan in 2023, leading to an oversupplied market where supply exceeds demand. The external demand for Uzbek onions remains weak, contributing to the surplus on the domestic market.
The Nigerian government is promoting onion farming in Enugu State to boost local production and reduce reliance on imports. The Enugu State Agricultural Development Program (ENADEP) aims to address high costs and product shortages by encouraging onion cultivation. The success of tomato farming in Nsukka serves as a model for onion cultivation, addressing factors such as high fuel prices, poor infrastructure, multiple taxes, and insecurity.
The Egyptian government's current ban on onion exports has resulted in exporters accumulating substantial stock in anticipation of the ban's potential lifting by the end of Dec-23, hoping for a high export price once the ban is lifted. Fearing a decline in quality over time, exporters are prioritizing markets in Gulf countries for their onion sales.
On November 16, the stock exchange in Emmeloord, Netherlands, saw an increase in the prices of large-sized yellow and red onions, attributed to the start of the storage season and increased trade activity. The price of large-sized yellow onions increased from USD 32.72 to 34.36/100 kg (EUR 30 to EUR 31.50/100 kg). The price of red onions also increased from USD 61.62 to 62.71/100 kg (EUR 56.50 to EUR 57.50/100 kg). Growing exports may also influence the onion market.