COVID-19 affects mung bean market; price drops

Workers weighing the beans in bags on a weighing scale. Photo: Phoe Khwar
Workers weighing the beans in bags on a weighing scale. Photo: Phoe Khwar

Mung bean market has been cooling amid COVID-19 negative impacts, and the price is sliding in the market, said U Min Ko Oo, secretary of Myanmar Pulses, Beans, and Sesame Seeds Merchants Association.
At present, the main buyer India demands the mung bean, yet the traders are observing the market and gradually purchasing them. This being so, mung bean is priced at only K870,000 per ton in the domestic market, according to pulses and beans market.
“The demand from India is not that strong amidst the current situations of COVID-19. Additionally, the prices in India slightly fall. Having said that, the domestic bean market is cool to a certain extent”, said U Min Ko Oo.
Starting from 13 March, India has banned all the travellers holding tourist visa entering the country through the international border checkpoints, airports, and ports until 15 April. Nevertheless, it does not stop Indian traders from purchasing Myanmar’s mung bean”, he continued.
“To contain the spread of coronavirus, Bodh Gaya pilgrimages are suspended for now. The authorities have restricted the docking of cruise ships at the largest container hub in the country, Chennai Port. As India is the world’s second-most populous country, the current restrictions aim to contain the spread of COVID-19. However, the ships loaded beans keep moving to Chennai and Mumbai”, said U Min Ko Oo.
The increased quota of 250,000 tons will have to reach India by April-end, 2020. At present, Myanmar has shipped over 100,000 tons, according to the association.
India recorded low mung beans yield due to erratic weather last year. Under the provincial government’s approval, more mung beans are being purchased beyond the previous quota limit, which has driven up mung beans prices to above K1.3 million per ton. However, mung beans fetched about 870,000 per ton at the present time, with a significant drop of K500,000.
The World Health Organization declared the novel coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic. The businesses in Myanmar are also hit by the negative impacts of the virus. (Tanslated by Ei Myat Mon)

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