Thailand remains world’s No.1 rice exporter


BANGKOK – Thailand exported 6.4 million tons of rice during this year’s first seven months, keeping the country as the world’s Number One rice exporter, said Rice Exporters Association of Thailand (REAT) President Charoen Laothamatas.

He revealed Thailand exported 986,839 tons of rice in May, worth 15.12 billion baht. The monthly export volume decreased 4.9 percent due to labor problems.

The gross export volume during the first seven months of 2017 amounted to 6,409,702 tons, worth 80.05 billion baht, marking a 17.5 percent growth in volume and 10.7 percent growth in value compared to the same period last year. The figure keeps Thailand as the world’s Number One rice exporter to the global market, followed by India and Vietnam.

The REAT expects the export figure in August to drop to only 700,000-800,000 tons of rice due to a slow delivery pending the next harvest, while the strengthened baht will hurt the competitiveness of the country’s export sector.

Rice exporters have purchase contracts earlier made to fulfill. The prices of rice have increased, with 100% Hom Mali Rice currently selling for 1,029 US dollars a ton, which has increased from 835 US dollars. The situation would help farmers sell their rice for an increased price, but would make it more difficult for firms to sell the rice to foreign buyers.