The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved the signing of an MoU between India and Turkey to ensure “quick and transparent” processing for import of poppy seeds.
Under the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), the Turkish Grain Board will maintain an online system to enable regulation of export of poppy seeds to India.
“Each year, the quantity of poppy seeds which shall be imported by India from Turkey shall be decided by the Central government in consultation with the government of Turkey taking into account the production of poppy seeds in Turkey in a crop year, balance from previous crop years and domestic or other export requirement of Turkey,” an official statement said.
“The MoU will promote quick and transparent processing of quota allocation and prior authorization for poppy seeds import from Turkey. In this way, genuineness of import contract can be easily ensured as well as much litigation matter resulting in delay in the import can be avoided,” it added.
The government said the agreement will ensure continuous availability of poppy seeds in domestic market.
Import of poppy seeds from Turkey was withheld due to litigation resulting in hike of price of poppy seeds in domestic market and hoarding of the same by some importers.