December 14, 2017

Keep The bowl Full Purchase of rice for reserve expected to occur after summer paddy harvest

Workers toss rice into the wind to remove sand and other impurities before transport. Photo: Aye Min Soe
Workers toss rice into the wind to remove sand and other impurities before transport. Photo: Aye Min Soe

DESPITE a proposed plan to buy rice for state reserves following the possible impacts of El Niño, the rice purchases are expected to begin after the summer paddy harvest due to the recent hike in the price of rice, according to an official from the Myanmar Rice Federation.
“The rice reserve scheme aims to ensure domestic rice sufficiency. It is impossible to buy rice at the moment due to the increase in local rice prices. So, rice purchases for reserve are expected to start at the end of April or the beginning of May,” said Dr Soe Tun, vice-chairman of the MRF.
But the vice-chairman highlighted the importance of launching the rice reserve, giving a reason that no one knows how much El Niño will impact the country.
Myanmar has no rice reserve since last year, said Dr Soe Tun, predicting that the next government is expected to address the problem in August and September.
Describing the local rice prices as the highest in the world, Managing Director U Ye Min Aung of Myanmar Agribusiness
Public Corporation Limited said at a meeting between the Ministry of Commerce and rice traders recently that it is hard to purchase rice for reserve due to rice price hike.
According to the managing director, there are enquires from foreign countries regarding the exporting of rice to Myanmar.
It is needed to launch the scheme in order to control increasing rice prices in the domestic market and to respond to climate change, said Dr Soe Tun.
According to the MRF vice-chairman, MRF suggested the government buy between 200,000 to 500,000 tones as reserve stock.

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