THE prices of black gram (urad called in India) rose again to over K1.5 million per tonne, the market’s data showed.
The price of black gram was worth K1,456,500 per tonne on 1 June, whereas it significantly soared to K1,513,000 per tonne. The figures reflect an increase of over K56,000 per tonne within one week.
India, the main buyer of Myanmar’s black grams, has a growing need for bean consumption. Therefore, the price is expected to stay on upward trends, according to the Aya Trade Centre under the Myanmar Trade Promotion Group.
Although black gram price is highly correlated with the market price of the importing country, all the commodity prices depend on the export/import policy of the government and Myanmar currency value in FX. After the Central Bank of Myanmar notified on 3 April 2022 that foreign exchange deposits must be converted into local currency at its reference rate of K1,850, and India extended the import deadline on 29 March, the prices of black gram dropped to K1,385,000 per tonne on 4 April.
Nevertheless, it is just a temporary drop due to a high consumption requirement and yield of Myanmar’s black grams. On 22 April, it increased again to K1,495,000 per tonne. Thereafter, the price fluctuated above K1.4 million per tonne and reached a high of K1.5 million per tonne in early June.
Myanmar growers have a cost burden of agricultural inputs as the prices nearly doubled and tripled this year. As a result of this, only a small profit is generated for the growers. Despite the increase in the black gram demand, supply is pretty low at the moment. Consequently, the black gram prices are around K50,000 per basket, the Ayar Trade Centre analyzed.
India, the main buyer of Myanmar’s black grams, has a high consumption of black grams. Furthermore, it reexports them to the external market. 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.
Myanmar conveyed US$231.874 million worth of over 305,489 tonnes of various beans and pulses to foreign trade partners between 1 April and 27 May 2022 in the current financial year 2022-2023. The country shipped $194.993 million valued at over 250,669 tonnes of pulses and beans to foreign markets through the sea route, and $36.881 million valued at over 54,820 tonnes were sent to the neighbouring countries through the land border.
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.