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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The South Korean government will hold a public hearing
The South Korean government will hold a public hearing to receive broad input before it makes a final decision on whether to retain its current tariff waiver on foreign rice or opt to open its market, the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry said Tuesday.

The event, scheduled for Friday at the Korea Agricultural Rural Infrastructure Corp. in the city of Uiwang, will involve officials from the finance, foreign affairs and agriculture ministries as well as farmers, agriculture-related interest groups and private experts, the ministry said.

Government officials are expected to elaborate on the results of negotiations that started in May and outline the expected impact of future steps on the country.

Seoul said it wanted to hold onto the present tariff waiver system that allows only the government to import rice. Rice imports under the so-called low duties of the tariff quota rate cannot be resold directly to consumers.

Under the 1994 Uruguay Round, South Korea received a 10-year moratorium on rice imports in exchange for raising minimum market access (MMA) to 4 per cent of total consumption by 2004 from 1 percent at the start. It is obliged to reach an agreement on retaining the import ban or opting for liberalization by the end of the year.

The government said it may accept an MMA in the 7-percent range and might allow 20-30 per cent of the rice imported by the government to be sold to consumers. Last month, the government explained that some countries were demanding an MMA of 8.9 percent and permission for 75 per cent of the amount to be sold to consumers directly by 2014.

However, officials here said if the demands by the nine rice exporting countries are deemed as being excessive, South Korea could opt for a tariff system. Under such an arrangement, they said, trading companies can import rice but must pay stiff duties that could exceed 400 per cent to prevent sudden saturation of the market that could wreak havoc with prices. The rates will be gradually lowered.

More realistically, Seoul may want to hold onto the current import waiver regime for a few years and then switch to a tariff mode once the Doha Development Agenda talks are resolved in 2007 or 2008.
MGR Archive 16.12.2004
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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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