Developing Countries Will Lead Global Rice Import Growth in 2013-22, Says USDA Rice growers positive California MG prices are UP Russia MG Harvest coming to end Egypt open rice exports Vietnam’s rice export in tough competition with India Thai rice exports in May Rise Above Target This Year Viet-Nam Rice exports likely to fall this year
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EU rice millers fear reform will aid imports
Rice millers in Europe are protesting that a subsidy reform to be considered next week by the European Union will leave them vulnerable to cheaper foreign imports.

The European Commission in Brussels has put forward a plan to overhaul the subsidy regime, which is to be voted on by agriculture ministers on Monday.

It is part of an effort to reduce European rice prices but at the same time still provide some support to European rice growers in Spain, Portugal, Italy and Greece.

The plan involves a reduction in intervention price, to €150 ($185, £100) per tonne from €298, but farmers are to be compensated for 88 per cent of this cut by means of a direct payment. The Commission is proposing that import duties for husked (brown) rice be cut from €264 a tonne to €65, and tariffs on milled rice be reduced from €460 a tonne to €175. Charles Fillingham, chairman of the UK-based Rice Association, the industry group that represents rice millers, said the difference between brown and white rice would narrow and could lead to a sharp increase of imported milled rice.

"There would need to be a brown-white differential of at least €150 a tonne for the EU rice sector to remain commercially viable and competitive," said Mr Fillingham. The Commission said it had to take into account not only the interest of producers, but also of consumers and its trading partners. The US is also upset about the new proposals, which include a fixed tariff and a move away from the current import duty structure - where the final duty is dependent on the variation between the EU intervention price and the prevailing world benchmark rice price. The EU imports 750,000 tonnes of rice a year, mainly from four countries - the US, Thailand, India and Pakistan. The latter two are not subject to import tariffs because basmati rice carries a premium of about €200 above the current EU intervention price. This arrangement will remain under the new plan.

"We are happy with the current arrangement as the import duties have some relevance to the world price, but the introduction of a fixed tariff, regardless of the world price, could make US exports to Europe uncompetitive," a US trade official said. Europe is the second largest destination for US rice exports. She said if the proposals were approved the US would look at its rights under the World Trade Organisation rules to lodge a possible protest.
MGR Archive 18.7.2004
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Russia Rapan $ 700
USA Jupiter Rice $630
USA Calrose #1 $830
USA Calrose #1 Paddy $480
EU Prices Baldo €660
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