THE price of black gram declined by K100,000 per tonne within ten days, according to the domestic beans and pulses market.
The black gram hit a high of over K1.7 million per tonne on 2 July, whereas the price rolled back to K1,595,000 per tonne on 11 July.
The drop in prices is attributed to the transaction policy changes. Earlier, export earnings for beans were allowed to be made with Yuan-Kyat or Baht- Kyat direct payment. Starting from 30 June, transactions for rice, corn, oil crops and beans and pulses are instructed to be paid in US dollars.
After export earnings were set to be paid in dollars, the official exchange rate against the US dollar was set at K1,850. Meanwhile, a dollar is worth over K2,000 in the unofficial FX market, resulting in a large gap between the official and unofficial exchange rates. Therefore, traders are reportedly observing the impacts on the agricultural produce from this action.
India is possible to import 50,000-75,000 tonnes of black gram (urad in India) and they will purchase black gram from Myanmar to keep them in reserve, according to a report cited by Agri World Mumbai on 4 July.
India, the main buyer of Myanmar’s black grams, has a high consumption of black grams. Furthermore, it reexports them to the external market after processing the grams. The annual consumption of black grams in India is estimated at 2.7-2.8 million tonnes.
India extended relaxations of conditions regarding clearance consignment for black gram and pigeon peas until 31 March 2023. The price needs to be closely observed for now. The prevailing prices of black gram in the domestic market are highly correlated with India’s demand, the rise in fuel oil price and the exchange rate against the dollar.
Last September 2021, the prices hit an all-time high of K2 million per tonne when the US dollar exchange rate with Myanmar currency hit over K3,000 in the local forex market.
Myanmar conveyed $369.8 million worth of over 489,985 tonnes of various beans and pulses to foreign trade partners between 1 April and 1 July 2022 in the current financial year 2022- 2023. The country shipped $284.4 million valued at over 362,276 tonnes of pulses and beans to foreign markets through the sea route, and $85.399 million valued at over 127,708.7 tonnes were sent to the neighbouring countries through land borders.
Myanmar exported $1.57 billion worth of over 2 million tonnes of various pulses to foreign trade partners last financial year 2020-2021. The country shipped $966.4 million valued in 1.24 million tonnes of pulses and beans to foreign markets through the sea route, and $604.3 million valued in 786,920 tonnes were sent to the neighbouring countries through the land border.
Myanmar yearly produces approximately 400,000 tonnes of black gram and about 50,000 tonnes of pigeon peas. Myanmar is the top producer of the black gram which is primarily demanded by India, while pigeon peas, green grams and chickpeas are cultivated in Australia and African countries besides Myanmar. —NN/GNLM