Rubber is a prioritized export item of national export strategy: Senior General Min Aung Hlaing

Senior General Min Aung Hlaing said that rubber is one of the prioritized export items in the national export strategy for raising the export volume of the nation.
Chairman of the State Administration Council Prime Minister Senior General Min Aung Hlaing highlighted the role of the rubber sector in his keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the Myanmar Rubber Forum-2023 held at the Myanmar International Convention Centre-II (MICC-II) in Nay Pyi Taw yesterday morning.
As rubber export earned between US$250 million and US$450 million per year on average during the period from the 2018-2019 financial year to 2022-23 FY, rubber is an important industrial crop for earning foreign currency, he added.
The Senior General noted that although Myanmar has long history for cultivation of rubber, per-acre yield and quality of Myanmar’s rubber is weak in success in comparison with that of Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia and Viet Nam. As such, he stressed the need to implement short- and long-term plans in initiating the strategic plans to develop rubber cultivation and rubber-based industries similar to other countries, adding it is necessary to encourage the development of rubber cultivation inclusive of the MSME scheme.
The Senior General underscored that as Myanmar possesses favourable climate and a vast land area for the cultivation of rubber, it is necessary to encourage extended cultivation of rubber plants. On the other hand, he urged the perennial crops research and technological development division to continuously conduct research for the production of quality rubber strains suitable for the nature of Myanmar with resilience to plant diseases.
He continued to say that although Myanmar has sound foundations for manufacturing rubber-based products at home, the country imports rubber-based goods annually due to a lack of encouragement to the manufacturing sector and capacity for market competition. For example, he noted that tyres and tubes of bicycles and motorcycles worth some US$65 million are exported yearly.
As such, the Senior General deeply urged all to manufacture tyres and tubes of bicycles and motorbikes at home as a must because encouraging rubber-based industries at home can benefit grasping market share for rubber at home, creation of employment opportunities and reducing spending foreign exchange.
Union Minister for Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation U Min Naung explained the purpose of holding the Myanmar Rubber Forum 2023.
The Senior General and those at the ceremony visited the booths of the Department of Agriculture on rubber cultivation, machinery used in rubber farms, car tyres, tyres and tubes of bicycles and motorbikes manufactured at home and other rubber products.
Also present at the ceremony were the SAC Joint Secretary and council members, Union ministers, the chairman of Nay Pyi Taw Council, senior military officers, local development partners, representatives from Myanmar Rubber Growers and Producers Association, relevant associations, rubber farmers and those from the Agriculture Department.
A total of 61 kinds of crops such as paddy, pulses and beans, oil crops and others are cultivated on 49.39 million acres of farmlands. Rubber, the industrial crop, is grown on 1.64 million acres of land in nine regions and states. More than 300,000 tonnes of rubber latex can be collected from some one million acres of rubber plantations.
Annually, the whole country uses more than 20,000 tonnes of rubber from the total production and some 300,000 tonnes of rubber is exported abroad. In the 2023-24 financial year, the government set an aim to export some 400,000 tonnes of rubber to foreign markets. — MNA/TTA

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