From May 1, rice exports return to normal (Photo: Vietnam News Agency).
In recent days, working delegations from the Ministries of Industry and Trade and of Agriculture and Rural Development have visited localities to get updated on the situation of rice production. This year, thanks to the Government’s directions, local farmers have early change crop timing and structures of plants to deal with severe drought and saltwater intrusion in the Mekong Delta, and therefore enjoying bumper harvests.
As reported by the Ministry of Industry and Trade, paddy rice output in 2020 is estimated at 43.5 million tonnes. In the Mekong Delta alone, harvest of the winter-spring crop has been completed on 1.54 million hectares of paddies, with output reaching about 10.8 million tonnes of paddy rice.
Excluding rice consumption demand and stockpiles, the remaining volume of paddy rice for export this year will be around 13.54 million tonnes, or between 6.5 and 6.7 million tonnes of rice.
According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT), by the end of April 2020, key factors behind the Government’s decision to delay the country’s rice export schedule at the end of March had changed significantly for the better.
Based on the new domestic and foreign contexts, the achieved goal of delaying the rice export schedule to ensure national food security in the most difficult time, and the latest data on rice supply and demand in the local market before the summer-autumn, the MoIT and other ministries and agencies agreed to propose to the Prime Minister to resume normal rice export from May 1, 2020 in accordance with the Government's Decree No. 107/2018 / ND-CP on rice export business.
The MoIT will continue to ensure rice exporters strictly comply with the provisions of the decree’s Article 12 on regularly maintaining a minimum reserve equivalent to 5 percent of the amount of rice they have exported in the previous 6 months and committing to immediately supply the domestic market with the reserve rice if required by the Government. The ministry has also requested the 20 largest rice exporters to sign an agreement with at least one supermarket chain to ensure the supply of the 5 percent reserve when needed.
The Prime Minister has given the green light to the MoIT’s proposal on the management of rice export as from May. Accordingly, from May 1, rice export activities will be resumed as normal in accordance with Decree No. 107/2018 / ND-CP. He requested that the export of rice should be done through international border gates (by road, rail, sea, waterway and air) only.
The MoIT was tasked to coordinate with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Ministry of Finance and the General Department of Customs in creating the best conditions possible for rice export in May, June and the following months, ensuring related rights and interests of producers and businesses. The MoIT also had to work with relevant agencies in monitoring the local production, distribution, stockpiles and export of rice in order to give a prompt notice to the PM once rice exports affect the nation’s food security.
The Ministry of Finance, meanwhile, was assigned to purchase sufficient rice for the national reserves./.
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