File application for dumping probe, commerce ministry tells cashew industry

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The commerce ministry has asked Cashew Export Promotion Council to file an application with Directorate General of Trade Remedies (DGTR) to probe dumping of the commodity into India, which is impacting domestic players, an official has said.

In a meeting last month on export performance of the country, the council had raised the matter of dumping of broken cashew into India.

Cashew Export Promotion Council of India was asked to file an anti-dumping investigation request with the DGTR, the official said.

The directorate is an arm of the ministry which conducts probe related to dumping and significant increase in import of a product.

If it establishes in its probe that dumping and increase in imports are impacting domestic players, DGTR recommends anti-dumping and safeguard duties, respectively. The finance ministry takes the final call to impose these duties.

The council's chairman R K Bhoodes said large volumes of semi-finished kernels are being dumped in India from African countries including Guyana, Mozambique, Tanzania and Ivory Coast.

The African nations have formed 'African Cashew Alliance' to boost the industry in that continent.

The government in June increased sharply the minimum import price for whole and broken cashew, making inbound shipments of the commodity costlier.

The import price for broken cashew was increased to Rs 680 per Kg from Rs 288 per kg.

Similarly, for whole cashew, it was enhanced to Rs 720 per kg from Rs 400 per kg earlier.

Below these prices, imports of the commodity is prohibited.

The country produces around 350,000 tonnes of cashew kernels. The production and import of raw cashew is around 800,000 tonnes and 900,000 tonnes, respectively.

India exported 84,352 tonnes of cashew kernels in 2017-18 as against 82,302 tonne during previous year. In value terms, exports went up almost 18 per cent to $911 million in 2017-18.

Indian cashew industry exports different grades and products like cashew kernels (wholes and broken), cashew nut shell liquid (CNSL), cardanol (purified CNSL) and flavoured kernels.

Indian cashew kernels are well accepted and preferred world over for its quality, taste, tradition and commitment to supply, compared to other origins.

The country exports to about 80 countries, including the US, UAE, the Netherlands, Saudi Arabia, Germany, Japan, Belgium, Korea, Spain, France, the UK, Kuwait, Singapore, Qatar, Greece, Italy, Iran and Canada.

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