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MARD denies ordering halt of rice exports
13 | 09 | 2007
The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) has released a notice saying that the ministry did not promulgate any documents ordering the halt of rice exports.

In fact, in a meeting at the end of August on regulating rice exports in the last months of 2007 chaired by the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) and MARD, the two ministries agreed to tell the Vietnam Food Association (Vietfood) to instruct enterprises to obey the agreed measures on rice export regulations.

Regarding the monthly rice export volume in the remaining months of 2007, Chairman of Vietfood has been asked to obey the Prime Minister’s instructions in order to ensure effective exports, while avoiding price fluctuations on the domestic market.

The government has set the target of exporting 4.5mil tonnes of rice this year. However, press agencies recently have spread the news that Vietnam’s rice for export has run out. The MoIT’s Trade Research Institute in early August said that in theory, enterprises could sign new contracts on exporting 0.1mil tonnes of rice this year. By that time, the total volume of contracted rice exports would reach 4.5mil tonnes.

Meanwhile, it is forecast that the merchandise rice output of Vietnam in 2007 will reach 8.7mil tonnes, which means that the rice volume for export is running out. Therefore, MoIT has decided to stop the signing of new contracts at this moment to ensure food security.

However, the latest meetings between MOIT and MARD revealed that domestic supply would not be so short. It is expected that in October, Mekong River Delta provinces will harvest the summer-autumn bumper crop. Experts have also reported that the area of paddies destroyed by insects has reduced considerably; therefore, Vietnam would still have enough rice to export more than the targeted level.

n related news, MOIT’s Import-Export Department said that the domestic prices of rice were at the same levels as those of Thailand, which made Vietnam’s export rice less competitive in the world’s market.

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