Thailand, once the world’s biggest rice exporter has added to the global supply glut as a result of rice stockpiles following government programme to buy production and the efforts of the farmers planting most crop ever.
According to the data compiled by Bloomberg from United State Department of Agriculture (USDA) estimates and sighted by NaijaAgroNet, the country’s 15.5 million-ton stockpile would be sufficient to cover annual imports by China, Nigeria, Iran and the next five biggest buyers in 2013-2014.
“Reserves in Thailand will increase 24 per cent to 15.5 million metric tons in 2013-2014 as global output rises 1.7 per cent to an all-time high of 476.8 million tons, the U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates. The price of 5per cent broken Thai white rice, an Asian benchmark, will drop 12 percent to $390, about N 62,438.94 a ton by April, a five-year low,” according to the median of eight trader and analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg.
“Thailand spent $21.6 billion, about N 3,454,012,106,673.96 since October 2011 buying at above-market prices to shore up growers’ incomes, creating a stockpile large enough to meet annual demand from the eight biggest importers and still have grain to spare. The global supply of rice, a staple for half the world, is expanding just as farmers reap record amounts of everything from corn to wheat, driving global food costs to a three-year low.
“Thailand will spend 270 billion baht ($8.6 billion) about N 8,600,000,000.00 buying rice from the harvest that started this month, reversing an earlier plan to cut prices after farmers threatened to protest. The ruling Pheu Thai party won a majority in 2011 elections with support from poorer rural residents who make up 87 per cent of the population. Thai output will gain 4.5 per cent to 21.1 million tons in 2013-2014,” the USDA said.
“I’ve rented more land, expanding farms by more than double, to reap the benefit of good prices from selling paddy to the government. My friends also boosted plantings as we earn more, “said Uthai Thongsaensuk, a 45-year-old farmer in the north-eastern Thai province of Udon Thani.
Darren Cooper, a senior economist at the London-based International Grains Council said the stockpiles in India, Vietnam, Thailand, the U.S. and Pakistan, the five largest shippers, will expand 6.8 per cent to a record 42.6 million tons in 2013-2014,