India could scrap wheat import duty
India could scrap a 40 per cent duty on wheat imports and cap the amount of stocks traders can hold to try to dampen record high domestic prices in the world's second biggest producer, government and trade officials told Reuters on Monday.
The South Asian country barred wheat exports in May after as the crop suffered a heatwave, but domestic prices still rose to a record high. Yet, international prices are still way above the domestic market, making it unviable for traders to buy from abroad.
If the government does remove the duty, and international prices also fall, then traders say they could start importing, especially during the upcoming festival season, when higher demand typically drives domestic prices higher.
"We are exploring all possible options to bring down the prices," said a senior government official who held discussion with industry officials last week.