Pune: Indian exporters of four key commodities of rice, tea, spices and dry fruits will be meeting the major importers in Saudi Arabia during a Food and Agro Buyer-Seller Meet (BSM) organised by Consulate General of India in Jeddah in association with Jeddah Chamber and Trade Promotion Council of India (TPCI). Twenty-five Indian companies from food and agricultural products sector, exporting rice, tea, spices and dry fruits, will be meeting the Saudi importers at the BSM which will be inaugurated by Md. Noor Rahman Sheikh, Consul General of India in Jeddah and Hassan IbraheemDahlan, Secretary General of Jeddah Chamber on November 11, 2018.
The four commodities being focused on have great prospects for furthering Indian exports to Saudi Arabia. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has been a major food and beverages (F&B) market for India. The BSM will be an ideal platform for Indian participants to explore the business opportunities for trade, acquaint with new consumer trends and initiate marketing tie-ups and joint ventures.
Basmati rice export continuously dominates India’s rice export basket. India accounts for around 72 per cent of the total Basmati rice produced and it offers India not just the leading producer tag but also very high product visibility in the world market.
Indian tea, is among the finest in the world owing to strong geographical indicators, heavy investments in tea processing units, continuous innovation, augmented product mix and strategic market expansion. India is the 2nd largest producer and 4th largest exporter of tea in the world with a 23 per cent share in global production and a 7.5 per cent share in world tea exports. India exports tea to more than 60 countries globally with Iran, Russia, UK, USA and the Gulf countries being major markets.
Indian spices too are much in demand in the GCC countries, given their exquisite aroma, texture and taste. Saudi Arabia primarily imports pepper, chilli, turmeric, ginger and cardamom from India.
Saudi Arabia is India’s one of the most important trade partnersand is a major FDI partner of India after the UAE in Gulf region. India’s export to Saudi Arabia was worth USD 5 billion in 2017. The major products exported by India to Saudi Arabia were rice, chemicals, refined petroleum oil and motor vehicles and its parts. India’s import from Saudi Arabia was worth USD 21 billion in 2017, amounting to a huge trade deficit of USD 16 billion. The major products imported by India from Saudi Arabia were petroleum products.
India is seeking to reduce the trade deficit by enhancing exports in areas where Saudi Arabia is importing from the world. India exported F&B products worth USD 4.6 billion in 2017. During 2017, India’s total exports in F&B products stood at USD 33 billion while the exports to Saudi Arabia in this sector during the same period stood at only USD 1.43 billion.
Source: Economic Times