India's government is set to restrict sugar exports after poor monsoon rains, broadcaster ET Now reported on Wednesday, citing agencies.

The seasonal monsoon rainfall is vital for India's $3 trillion economy and brings nearly 70% of the rain the country needs to water crops and replenish reservoirs and aquifers.

Monsoon rain this year was the lowest since 2018 due to the El Nino weather pattern - a warming of Pacific waters that is typically accompanied by drier conditions over the Indian subcontinent, according to the state-run weather office.

Summer rainfall deficit risks making staples such as sugar, pulses, rice and vegetables more expensive and lift overall food inflation.

The Indian government did not immediately respond to an emailed request for comment. (Reporting by Shivam Patel; Editing by Andrew Heavens and Muralikumar Anantharaman)