- President Abdoulaye of Senegal has assured his citizens that Indian authorities have agreed to supply 600,000 tonnes of rice annually to the west African country for six years. Like many countries in Africa, rice is a key staple food in Senegal.
On 1 April, India, the third biggest rice exporter in the world, restricted exports of premium long grain basmati rice to Senegal where protests against rising food prices have been regular. India has also increased the minimum export price for basmati from US $1,100 per metric tonne to US $1,200.
In a televised speech, Mr Wade said the Indian Prime Minister had accepted his [Wade's] request for supply of rice to meet the needs of Senegalese.
Senegalese leader assured his government's resolve to arrest food-related problems. He urged Senegalese to exercise patience, expressing confidence that Senegal would able to develop rice cultivate and become sefl-sufficient after six years.
Mr Wade, who had earlier ruled out the existence of famine or hunger riots in Sengeal, said the army would be tasked to protect the Indian rice.
President Wade had launched an agricultural revolution plan which, according to him. aims to "make best use of our land to satfisfy our food needs from next winter onwards."
Mr Wade also asked Senegalese not to listen to what he called "a bunch of ignorant opposition parties" bent on criticising his government's economic policies without genuine reasons.
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