The country is likely to see normal monsoon rains in 2018, though there’s a threat from an anomalous warming in the Indian Ocean, according to the the India Meteorological Department (IMD), or the Met as it is called.
This is good news for the market in general and farmers specifically as the farm output depends on the vagaries of nature. IMD said that the overall rainfall is likely to be 97 per cent of the average (89 cm) between June and September. Last year, it got 95 per cent. The IMD has ruled out chances of a “deficient rainfall”. The IMD bases it’s optimism on an assessment that an El Nino phenomena, associated with a weak monsoon, is unlikely.
Details, such as how the monsoon will pan out over the country and the quantum of rainfall in July and August — the key monsoon months — would be made available in the second assessment in June .
While the IMD’s forecasts are based on the statistical model, the dynamical model predicts 99 per cent rainfall.
One factor that will have to watched out for is the Indian Ocean Dipole, which if “positive” helps the monsoon. This will be clearer in the next month.
The monsoon is considered normal if the rainfall is between 96 per cent and 104 per cent of the long period average.