Vietnam could disrupt plans to bolster NFA’s rice buffers
In a phone interview, Philippine Confederation of Grains Associations (Philcongrains) President Herculano Co, said that government may not be able to count on additional imports of 500,000 metric tons (MT) of rice on top of its current government-to-government contract with Vietnam for 500,000 MT, citing a potential rise in prices as El Niño hurts production across the South China Sea.
According to “Vietnam Consolidated Report on Drought and Saltwater Intrusion” collated between October and March by the United Nations Disaster Risk Management Team (UNDRMT), provinces in the Mekong Delta, Southern Central and Central Highlands regions have been feeling the impact of the El Niño-induced dry spell since the end of 2015.
The Mekong Delta is Vietnam’s source of about half the country’s rice and fruit, with 159,000 hectares (ha) of the staple grain reported damaged by the drought as well as by saltwater intrusion as of March 9.
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