[Answered] Assess the impact of the export restrictions and price controls in India on local farmers and global trade dynamics.

Introduction: Give a brief contextual introduction

Body: Highlight the impact of export restriction & price control on local farmers and global trade.

Conclusion: Way forward

Central Government has recently put back onion exports in the ‘free’ category with the caveat of a minimum export price of $550 a tonne, and a 40% levy on top.

Impact on Local Farmers

  • Double-Edged Sword: Initially, price controls can offer some protection to farmers by ensuring a minimum selling price. However, in the long run, these controls can discourage investment in better farming practices and infrastructure as potential profits are capped. This can limit future productivity gains.
  • Market Distortion: Export restrictions prevent farmers from accessing higher international prices, potentially reducing their income. This can be particularly detrimental for farmers with surplus produce.
  • Storage Woes: With restricted exports, overflowing government stockpiles can lead to spoilage and waste, further impacting farmer profits.
  • Overall Impact: The combined effect of export restrictions and price controls can create uncertainty for farmers, affecting their investment decisions and cropping patterns. Additionally, if export restrictions are imposed on key agricultural commodities, it can disrupt supply chains and lead to wastage of perishable goods.

Impact on Global Trade Dynamics

  • Trade Relations: Export restrictions imposed by India may strain diplomatic relations with importing countries, especially if they perceive such measures as protectionist or unfair. Disputes over trade policies can escalate tensions and hinder broader economic cooperation.
  • Price Volatility: Export restrictions can disrupt global supply chains, leading to price hikes in importing countries. This can create food insecurity in nations reliant on these imports.
  • Supply Disruptions: Export restrictions in India, as a major agricultural exporter, can disrupt global supply chains and affect international markets. Export restrictions can lead to shortages in importing countries, prompting them to seek alternative suppliers or pay higher prices.
  • Missed Opportunities: By limiting exports, India may miss out on the potential benefits of globalization, such as access to foreign exchange and technology transfer.


A shift towards market-oriented reforms, coupled with targeted support programs, could be a more sustainable approach for Indian agriculture and global trade.

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