Cabinet approves setup of National Rice Policy Committee

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BANGKOK, Sept 6 – The Cabinet on Tuesday endorsed establishment of a National Rice Policy Committee, to be chaired by the prime minister, said Deputy Prime Minister and Commerce Ministry Kittiratt Na-Ranong.

The committee chaired by PM Yingluck Shinawatra will meet next week to plan the startup of the rice mortgage scheme on Oct 7 as the rice harvest is expected from the end of October into the beginning of November.

All paddies in an unlimited amount can be mortgaged under the government scheme.

Government loans will be offered to the Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Co-operatives to run the project and the government will accelerate releasing rice into the market.

Thailand’s domestic consumption of packed rice– in two- and five-kilo bags– is about 500,000 tonnes annually, a level which will be able to absorb the amount of the upcoming rice harvest reduce the burden of storing rice stocks by the government.

The Public Warehouse Organisation will help produce packed rice for domestic sale in an attempt to keep rice prices in the market from being overpriced.