PH must increase 2016 rice import deals -USDA
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) said in its recent forecast that the Philippines must increase its rice imports this year to up to 2 million tonnes.
With no recent import deals this year, a 6-year high import estimate will be needed to prevent supply shortage, Reuters said in a report.
The 2 million tonne requirement is higher by 300,000 tonnes compared to NFA’s initial rice import estimate for 2016.
Asian countries Iran and Indonesia began purchasing rice stock, and global rice production is projected to decrease for the first time since 2010, Reuters said.
Although rice prices in the Philippines have been relatively stable over the past few months, first quarter rice supply declined by almost 10% versus last year.
With the decline in rice harvests due to El Nino and looming dangers of upcoming La Nina phenomenon, agriculture officials warns of furthercrop damage in the coming months.
Last week, Thai rice prices skyrocketed to a 2-year high, which cased price increases in Vietnam, the Philippines’ main supplier of rice.
Bruce Tolentino, the deputy director general for communication at the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) said in the report”Everybody is watching the Philippines’ moves in the open market, which could trigger panic among buyers,”