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Rice imports down 43% as of Sept. 21

RICE imports were markedly lower as of the third week of September from a month earlier, Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI) data showed.

As of September 21, inbound shipments of the staple totaled 178,164.12 metric tons (MT), lower by 43.01 percent from August’s 312,642.17 MT.

The rice imports were also lower by 32.17 percent from the recorded 262,701.24 MT a year earlier.

Rice imports peaked in April at 513,425.17 MT.

Year-to-date, inbound shipments hit 2.49 million MT, lower by 17.94 percent from 3.03 million MT posted in January-September last year.

Vietnam remained the country’s top source of rice, having shipped 2.23 million MT and accounting for 89.73 percent of total imports.

Thailand followed with 116,106.17 MT, Myanmar with 95,847 MT, and Pakistan with 25,545.21 MT.

India, which announced an export ban on their non-basmati white rice in July, supplied the country with 13,493.39 MT.

The remaining 4,570.72 MT came from Cambodia, China, Japan, Italy and Spain.

Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. chief economist Michael Ricafort attributed the decline in imports to the early harvest season from mid-September to October 2023, which led to higher palay or unmilled rice supplies.

“[T]he government, as a matter of policy, would like to prioritize the purchase of local palay from local farmers to prevent rice imports from bringing down the farmgate price paid to farmers that reduces the latter’s income,” he noted.

Higher world prices “somewhat reduced demand” for imports.

“Measures by some rice exporting countries to restrict or reduce rice exports could have partly led to the reduction in rice imports by the Philippines,” Ricafort said.

https://www.manilatimes.net/2023/10/03/business/top-business/rice-imports-down-43-as-of-sept-21/1912980 QR Code

Published Date: October 3, 2023

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