India's Rice Ban, By The Numbers (& Why It's Causing Alarm)
Image Credit: PEXELS

INDIA’S ban on the export of non-Basmati white rice, which came into effect on 20 July 2023, has led to much anxiety in the global market. The Food Ministry cited inflation-triggered rise in the price of grains domestically, as well as monsoon-related crop issues in various regions, as the reason for the ban. Here’s a brief, by-the-numbers look at why India’s rice is so important to the world:

22.2: In million tonnes, the quantity of India’s rice shipments in 2022.

55.4: In million metric tons, the quantity of total, global rice exports in 2022.

40: Percentage share of India, in global rice exports as of 2022.India’s rice shipments last year exceeded the combined total of the other top-four rice exporting countries (Thailand, Vietnam, Pakistan and the US).

140: Number of countries that import non-Basmati white rice from India. Key among these are Benin, Bangladesh, Angola, Cameroon, Djibouti, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Kenya and Nepal, while experts estimate that Malaysia could prove most vulnerable to the rice ban.

30: Percentage of Singapore’s rice exports that come from India.

Millions: Number of people world over who experts say will be affected by India’s ban.

15: Percentage by which global grain prices are predicted to rise in 2023 due to the rice ban.

14: Percentage by which they have already risen since June 2022.

11.5: In percentage, the increase in domestic retail prices since 2022 that India’s Food Ministry has cited in its announcement of the ban.

16: Number of years since India’s last rice export ban.

20: In percentage, duty imposed by India on non-Basmati rice exports, since September 2022.

41: In million tonnes, the amount of rice India currently has in reserve.

135.5: In million tonnes, total rice output in the 2022-23 crop year.

80: In percentage, share of India’s total rice output that is planted in June.

16: Number of countries that have imposed export restrictions on food since the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022. Among these are Indonesia (palm oil), Argentina (beef), Turkey and Kyrgyzstan (grain products).

3: In billions, the number of people worldwide for whom rice is the staple food.

90: In percentage, share of total rice produced in the world that is grown in Asia.