1. Agriculture World

India Unleashes Diplomatic Power to End Imbroglio with Indonesia on Import of Agri Products

Indonesian agriculture imports from India have come to a halt in recent days after the officials there prevented certification organisations located in India from receiving approval.

Chintu Das
Vegetables
Vegetables

India has used its diplomatic power to resolve the impasse with Indonesia over agricultural imports, and it expects shipments from the host nation (India) to begin flowing within the next week to ten days.

According to sources in the ministry of commerce and elsewhere, the Indian ambassador to Indonesia has met with the Director General of the Indonesia Agriculture Quarantine Agency (IAAQ) in the last few days, while top officials from APEDA and the ministry of commerce have met with officials in the Indonesia embassy to clear the air.

Indonesian agriculture imports from India have come to a halt in recent days after the officials there prevented certification organisations located in India from receiving approval.

These authorities or labs issued certificates that are required for agricultural exports to Indonesia, and their licenses were valid until March 25.

Despite India gathering and providing all relevant documentation, including extensive data for the previous three years, through its embassy in Indonesia in the final week of February for the renewal of the licenses, sources claimed the licenses were not renewed.

On March 23, Indonesian officials issued an order cancelling all licenses granted to India-based certification companies and requesting that new applications be submitted.

As of 2020-21, Indonesia imported $692 million worth of APEDA-certified agricultural products from India, including rice, groundnut, wheat, onion, dairy, and poultry products. For the time being, dairy and poultry products are exempt from the certification prohibition.

In terms of imports, India is one of Indonesia's largest purchasers of palm oil, accounting for over 30% of the country's monthly demand for crude and refined palm oil.

"One must realise one thing: just as we are eager to resume our exports, Indonesia is also eager to terminate the problem as soon as possible," a senior trade official said. "This is the month of Ramadan there, when demand for agriculture products, namely rice, sugar, wheat, and onions, spikes."

He expressed hope that the imbroglio would be resolved quickly due to the amount of pressure exerted by all parties, including the commerce ministry's highest officials.

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