Permanent Secretary for Commerce Yanyong Phuangrach said the Commerce Ministry will soon be meeting with representatives of rice producing nations which are also members of ASEAN. He said the discussion is to collaboratively formulate measures to prevent the price of rice from falling and regulate the management of such produce. The participants will coordinate on the government, private and political levels through a joint committee.
According to Mr. Yanyong, since ASEAN produces two-thirds of the global rice, it is important that members of the ASEAN community do not compete with but help one another to promote rice. He cited the much lower price of Vietnamese rice, which has attracted buyers away from Thailand, as an example of why ASEAN should strive for mutual growth in this industry.
Mr. Yanyong also proposed that a stock of ASEAN rice be set up, based on mutual efforts, in order to provide rice at affordable prices for member countries that demand a large volume of import, such as Malaysia, the Philippines and Indonesia.