August 19, 2016

Old rice prices stable despite decline in export price of rice to China

Paddy being seen dried in the sun. Photo: Aung Thant Khaing
Paddy being seen dried in the sun. Photo: Aung Thant Khaing

The prices of old rice are still stable despite a decline in export prices of rice to China.
Prices of low-quality rice in Mandalay market is on the decline because of China’s low demand for low-quality rice and Chinese Yuan depreciation, said U Thein Zaw, the chairman of Mandalay Rice Depot.
Myanmar’s low quality rice market is depending on the demand from China and Yuan exchange rate. Besides, the local consumption of low quality rice has also declined.
The major merchants from China do not purchase in bulk because of the seizure of illegal inflow of trade. Some local rice merchants have turned to sugar trading. However, the price of the old rice is still stable, he added.
The price of the exported low quality rice to China has decreased by Ks500 to Ks700 per bag. The value of Yuan has also declined from 5.59 on 18th June to 5.72 per Ks1,000 on 10th July. The torrential rains in Myitkyina, Phakant, Laukkai badly affect the rice trading and the demand has been on the decline.
The transportation has thus caused delays. Besides, the rice merchants cannot purchase rice because some rice shops are closed because of bad weather, he continued.
The rice merchants suggest that the government provide subsidies rather than provide agricultural loans in order that production costs can be reduced, pedigree seeds can be bought at a cheaper price and the high quality chemical fertilizers can be utilized well enough.
Currently, the local farmers mostly use the fertilizers made in China, which does not meet the quality. The closure of China border gates might affect the rain crops after harvesting. We need to seek the new market from other foreign countries, said Ko Sai Kyaw, a rice merchant.
Myanmar exported 13,755 tonnes of rice worth US$5.4million to Indonesia. About 300,000 tonnes of rice are offered to purchase from India following the previous rice export of high quality when compared to that of neighbouring countries and thus, Myanmar and India have already signed a government to government (G to G) agreement.
Free trade can enhance the trade volume of the country. Non-tariff barriers play an important role in bilateral trade, said U Min Aung, the secretary of Myanmar Rice Federation on his facebook.
The local price of the rice ranges from Ks22,000 to Ks43,000, depending on the rice variety during the first week of July.—Aung Thant Khaing


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