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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Thailand 'no' to curbing rice exports
Thailand, the world’s biggest rice exporter, said today it would not follow the footsteps of its competitor, Vietnam, in restricting rice exports. Its Deputy Prime Minister/Finance Minister, Surapong Suebwonglee, said there was no plan to suspend rice exports and the government would let the market decide.

“We will let the rice market follow demand and supply. We don’t want to abuse or make it artificial,” he told reporters at the 12th Asian Finance Ministers’ Meeting here today.

Surapong was asked whether Thailand, which sold 9.4 million tonnes overseas in 2007 and 2.4 million tonnes so far this year (until March 10), would restrict exports following steep price increase and tight supply.

Vietnam, the world’s second-biggest exporter, had told its dealers not to sign export contracts in March and April due to production shortage. According to reports, the Thai Government has about 2.1 million tonnes in its stockpile and expects at least 18 million tonnes of new white rice to enter the market over the next 12 months.

Chookiat Ophaswongse, president of the Thai Rice Exporters Association, had told the media that exports would drop 50 percent in the second quarter due to surging prices and tight supply after Vietnam’s decision to hold back its export.

The Food and Agriculture Organisation’s international rice prices have risen 20 per cent since January.

He said the political uncertainty in Thailand posed serious risk to domestic recovery more than financial turmoil in the international scene.

On whether the six-party coalition that took power in February could last more than a year following various attacks against it, Surapong said, “as a coalition government we hope so.”

Surapong said despite the political problems, the government was confident it could achieve a six per cent growth this year following various stimulus packages revealed so far.

He said the initial forecast was between 4.5 per cent and 5.5 per cent, adding that the US sub-prime crisis would not have much effect as it has been there for some time.
MGR Archive 6.4.2008
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