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Last-Ditch Rice Market Talks Underway
The Korea Times, Dec 9, 2004
These talks are the eighth round of working-level talks aimed at resolving major issues such as raising the rice import quota and allowing imported rice to be sold directly to Korean consumers. At home, the government is facing mounting protests by angry farmers, who are planning massive demonstrations in Seoul and other major cities later this week.

The outcome of talks with Washington will be a benchmark for remaining negotiations with other countries, the Agriculture Ministry said.

The U.S. has demanded the Korean government import more U.S. rice and make it available to Korean consumers, but the Korean government wouldn’t accept the demands.

Ministry officials said Washington wants Korea to allow 75 percent of imported rice be sold directly to local consumers by 2014, while the Korean government has proposed 10 to 20 percent.

Imported rice at present is solely used in processed foods such as flour and is not available to local shoppers.

The U.S. is the second biggest rice exporter to Korea after China. Last year, Korea imported 57.4 percent rice from China, 27.5 percent from the U.S. and 15 percent from Thailand.

The U.S. wants to emerge as the No. 1 rice exporter, increasing the volume of U.S. rice up to 50 percent, but the issue needs negotiations with other countries.
MGR Archive 9.12.2004
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Region Type Price  
Russia Rapan $ 700
USA Jupiter Rice $630
USA Calrose #1 $830
USA Calrose #1 Paddy $480
EU Prices Baldo €660
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