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March 23, 2019

MRF urges members to work together to boost exports

Workers loading sacks of rice on a ship at a jetty in Yangon. Photo: Phoe Khwar
Workers loading sacks of rice on a ship at a jetty in Yangon. Photo: Phoe Khwar

The Myanmar Rice Federation has asked member companies to consider cooperative exports to increase rice trade.
The federation said it has asked members to work together for exporting rice through government-to-government agreements and cooperative exports, under an arrangement with the MRF. Member companies wishing to participate in the initiative have been asked to apply by March-end, according to the federation.
“To boost rice exports, MRF is trying to identify more external markets in collaboration with the concerned government departments. They are seeking to link exporters with markets in Africa, China, Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, and other countries,” said U Aung Than Oo, the vice chair of the federation.
“A delegation led by Union Minister for Planning and Finance U Soe Win, including members of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI), attended the 2nd China-Myanmar Economic Corridor Forum held in the Yunnan Province of China in February. The delegates met with their Chinese counterparts in Yunnan to discuss increasing the quota limit for rice to 400,000 tons. China had granted a quota of 100,000 tons to Myanmar in 2016,” according to a statement released by the MRF on 25 February.
Additionally, traders from the two countries can enter into a legal agreement for trade of broken rice produced in Myanmar by paying a tax, the press release stated.
Myanmar exports rice to foreign trade partners through the maritime route and border gates. China has been cracking down on illegal trade, prompting its merchants to halt trade, which has resulted in a drop in rice exports through Myanmar’s border channels.
“The Ministry of Commerce has forwarded a request to China, seeking a legal export channel for rice through the border gates, and so, Myanmar merchants need to make the necessary preparations for meeting China’s quality standards in order to pass its food safety inspection mechanism — the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection, and Quarantine (AQSIQ),” said U Aung Htoo, the Deputy Minister for Commerce.
Between 1 April, 2018 and 15 February, 2019, 2.115 million tons of rice and broken rice were sent to foreign markets, fetching an estimated income of US$699.46 million.
Myanmar exports rice to 50 countries and ships broken rice to 21 external markets.
(Translated by Ei Myat Mon)

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