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According to preliminary estimates given by the Commerce Ministry, India's tea exports for the fiscal year 2022-23 increased 17.61 percent to 6,582.14 crore from 5,596.67 crore the previous fiscal year, owing to increased shipments to Russia and the UAE.
According to trade insiders, the increase in shipments was on track, with exporters taking advantage of the turmoil in Sri Lanka to push more Indian teas into the global market. However, exporters are concerned about the evolving situation in Iran, one of the largest purchasers of Indian orthodox teas, and have stated that it may have an impact on shipments in the current fiscal year.
According to Anshuman Kanoria, chairman of the India Tea Exporters Association, the increase in exports was expected and was mostly due to a lower Sri Lankan yield. "The blow that Sri Lanka took created some opportunities, which we were able to capitalize on. With the Iran issue still looming, overall export prospects for this year are not as bright as they were last year," Kanoria added.
Iran accounts for more than half of India's conventional exports. "No one knows what is going on in Iran. They have not filed new contracts in over three months, and the orthodox market has opened relatively muted. Shipments have been made, but payments for them have been delayed to arrive.
According to Deepak Shah, Chairman of the South India Tea Exporters Association, Russia has been buying actively, and with the rupee exchange taking place, exports are expected to grow. However, Iran remains a source of concern because the payment problem persists and new contracts are not being signed. "The Iranian government is required to register import contracts, which they are not doing for unknown reasons," he claimed.
According to N Lakshmanan of Golden Hill Estates, an exporter of orthodox teas, the year has been quite good. "The government must assist exporters in their marketing efforts and assist in establishing India's presence even in non-traditional markets."