Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Wednesday, Jun 09, 2004
Agri-Biz & Commodities
Oilseeds & Edible Oil
Industry & Economy - Exports & Imports
Oilseeds sector in fix over lack of export data
Mumbai , June 8
DELAY in processing data/export statistics at the Director General of Commercial Intelligence and Statistics (DGCIS), Kolkata is preventing the oilseeds industry from getting a clear picture of the export scenario.
DGCIS is the nodal agency for the commodities industry providing monthly export statistics from seafood to oilseeds.
"Currently, there is a three-month gap in the export data provided. For instance, though we are into the first week of June 2004, the most current data that we have on the oilseeds industry is for the month of February 2004. As such even if, say, the Commerce Minister, were to ask us for an update on the export scenario, we would not be able to give a confirmed picture," said an industry source.
DGCIS is supposed to provide country-wise update of the previous month's export figures between the 10th and 15th of every month.
The industry has urged the Commerce Ministry to deal with the issue on a priority basis.
There are also concerns over the fact that ever so often, a mistake in the form of a wrong code or wrong heading (instead of kg it would go as, say, tonne) occurs, which sends the wrong signal to the domestic as well as the international trade community.
However, to be fair this was not true for the commodities industry alone, sources said.
Industry sources maintain that one way of speeding up information in a much more efficient manner would be if the commodity associations were given the mandate of a monitoring agency.
"Information could be routed to DGCIS via the associations which would also ease some of DGCIS's load. For, as a monitoring agency, associations would be able to route information faster, easier and in a much more accurate manner. Besides, they would also be able to deal with any problems that may crop up with importers, or they can jointly help resolve problems with overseas buyers," the sources said.
When contacted, Mr Kishore Tanna, Chairman, Indian Oilseeds and Produce Exporters Association (IOPEA), said the industry had no clear picture of whether exports to the regular nations had increased or decreased.
"Regular updates would enable us to take the necessary steps if say exports to one of our regular markets is seen as slipping. However, that is not the case today. Despite repeated requests, DGCIS is unable to provide us with the required data on a monthly basis," he said.
Mr Tanna also said IOPEA could be considered as a monitoring agency for all oilseeds such as groundnut, sesame, niger seeds, etc.
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