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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Next year’s rice imports seen to be very expensive
The Philippine Star
Rising world market prices of rice would make it costlier for the country to import rice in 2005.
An industry source said prices of rice in the world market which have been rising in recent weeks are expected to further climb next year to as much as $300 per metric ton (MT), primarily due to the recent hike in prices imposed by Thailand, the world’s leading rice exporter.
The Thai government recently hiked its support price for its rice farmers which is reportedly higher than prevailing world market prices, such that one MT Thai rice now costs about $260.
"The government of Thailand increased its subsidy for its rice farmers in its bid to woo votes for the incumbent administration since next year would be national election season," the source explained.
The source noted that Thailand which this year continued to outpace all other rice exporting countries, will remain as the primary source of rice imports, especially for rice importing countries like the Philippines since its major competitors are experiencing supply problems.
China for one, is seen to further withdraw from the market next year because of limited export volumes. India on the other hand, is also expected to limit its exports due to lower production and lack of subsidies from its government.
Vietnam, which has emerged as a major rice supplier, is also facing production problems and is seen to contract its exports volume. This leaves Thailand as the major market source.
With drought concerns next year predicted to shrink Thailand’s rice production and the likes of China, India and Vietnam expected to remain in the sidelines, Thailand will still be in the best position to dictate prices, the source noted.
The Philippines, however, expects its rice import volume to be lower in 2005 due to anticipated record harvest of palay this year. Rice imports this year cost government about P12 billion.
"Let’s hope that the country could hurdle the El Niño next year and enable farmers to increase production. Otherwise, it will be more expensive to import rice," said the source.
The country’s rice production this year is expected to hit a record-high of 14.54 million MT, about seven percent higher than 2003’s level of 13.5 million MT.
Agriculture officials attributed this year’s higher production output to the expansion of the use of hybrid and certified rice seeds, as well as favorable weather conditions.
As a result, yields per hectare went up by about 4.2 percent. As a result, an official of the National Food Authority said the country is expected to have a high yearend rice buffer stock of 90 to 100 days. "With this comfortable level or volume of inventory the country’s import could be at around 420,000 to 700,000 tons which should be sufficient to meet requirements during the lean months of July to September, the NFA official said."
The Department of Agriculture (DA) is already preparing several measures to cushion the impact of the El Nino weather phenomenon which is expected to peak during the summer months next year.

MGR Archive 22.11.2004
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