Myanmar meets reserve rice target, halting purchase

By Nyein Nyein

Workers bagging rice at a warehouse in Ayeyawady Region on 3 February 2020.  Photo: Thin Zar Hlaing
Workers bagging rice at a warehouse in Ayeyawady Region on 3 February 2020.  Photo: Thin Zar Hlaing

Myanmar has purchased an adequate amount of rice for the national reserve and the purchase has temporarily halted, according to the Department of Consumer Affairs, under the Ministry of Commerce.
At present, the State has purchased an adequate amount of 50,000 tonnes of rice (Aemahta variety) under the national reserve scheme.
Further purchase plan for the national reserve has been reported to the supervision committee. The mills stopped receiving rice, as the rice volume for the national reserve has met its target, the Consumer Affairs Department sent a notification on 16 July to the Myanmar Rice Federation.
The rice will be sold through retail shops. The state’s emergency rice reserve is to ensure the food security, keep the price stable in the domestic market, continue to export them regularly, lessen the worries of the consumers during the coronavirus pandemic, and not to harm the rice production of farmers due to the price fall when the new paddy is harvested.
Therefore, the rice has been purchased from exporters since April-end.
Those reserved rice are planned to be sold at K22,800 per 108-pound bag to the registered retail shops, with the maximum 200 bags per batch. The shops must resell the rice to the consumers not exceeding K1,000-1,100 per pyi (2.3 kg) depending on the regions.
Moreover, there is a separate plan to sell the rice at the labour-intensive factories for the workers. MRF stated that the respective Consumer Affairs Department of the regions and states will monitor the sales to ensure systematic management.
To ensure the self-sufficiency during the coronavirus pandemic, the government will spend K38 billion to purchase foodstuffs (50,000 tonnes of rice and 12,000 tonnes of palm oil), said Dr Than Myint, Union Minister for the Commerce. (Translated by Ei Myat Mon)

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