22nd january,2014 daily global rice e newsletter by riceplus magazine


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22nd january,2014 daily global rice e newsletter by riceplus magazine

  1. 1. 22nd January , 2014 TOP Contents - Tailored for YOU Latest News Headlines…  Russia to facilitate Pak kinnow, rice exports  Farmers' coops speak up on rice smuggling modus  Gov’t agencies to join forces in rice smuggling probe  Farm production falls short of 2013 target  Indonesian govt assures rice supplies to Jakarta safe  Rice exports heading to South Korea  Cambodia targets 1 million tons of rice exports in 2015  Suthep says govt fails to secure loans for rice subsidy  Rice row could see Phichit leaders join Bangkok protest  Nigeria loses over N110bn as revenue on rice drops by 90.6% in 2013  Govt to push on with rice scheme loan  Lawyers agree to help farmers over rice NEWS DETAILS: Russia to facilitate Pak kinnow, rice exports Daily Rice E-Newsletter by Rice Plus Magazine www.ricepluss.com News and R&D Section mujajhid.riceplus@gmail.com Cell # 92 321 369 2874
  2. 2. January 22, 2014:OUR STAFF REPORTER Lahore - The government of Russia and government of Pakistan signed a protocol for facilitating export of Kinnow, Rice and potato in a ceremony held at local hotel of Lahore. Six member Russian delegation is on an official visit to Pakistan and will visit rice, kinnow and potato producing areas of Pakistan. i.e. Sargodha, Bhalwal etc.The Head Of Plant Protection Department Dr Mubarik from Pakistan and Mr Alexandr Andreevich, Head of Plant Protection Department Russia has signed the protocol. The senior officials of Trade Development Authority of Pakistan, Mr Sher Afghan Khan DG TDAP Lahore, Mr Baqir Hussain, Salman jamil represented the government of Pakistan at the ceremony. The leading exporters , representatives of Food Security and Research Department and representative of Pakistan Horticulture Company also attended the event. The exporters are hopeful that it will not only boost the export in these three products but will also open new avenues for trade between two countries. Farmers' coops speak up on rice smuggling modus By Kathlyn dela Cruz, ABS-CBNnews.com Posted at 01/22/2014 11:13 PM | Updated as of 01/22/2014 11:13 PM Alleged smuggler David Lim mum on rice trading business MANILA -- Businessman David Lim, one of the people accused of participating in big-time rice smuggling in the country, on Wednesday admitted that his company is involved in rice trading but declined to give details on their operations.Lim was one of the people summoned to the hearing of the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Food on Wednesday.According to Senate agriculture committee chairperson Cynthia Villar, documents showed that David G. Lim is the president of DGL Commodities Inc. and an incorporator of DGL Trucks Inc.Lim confirmed this. However, when asked regarding the rice trading operations of DGL Commodities Inc., he claimed that he is not familiar with the process, noting that it is his wife who handles the dealings regarding rice importation."I'm not denying that we have a rice company. But with regards to the dealings of this company, my wife is the one who knows. She is the one handling our commodities," he said.He then told Villar that if needed, the Senate could also summon his wife to help shed light on the matter.Villar did not easily accept Lim's answer, saying that as the company's president, it is his responsibility to know what's going on with his business.However, Lim just said: "I trust her (wife) with the company so siya yung pinamahala ko sa company with regards sa commodity business." Rice smuggling modus Daily Rice E-Newsletter by Rice Plus Magazine www.ricepluss.com News and R&D Section mujajhid.riceplus@gmail.com Cell # 92 321 369 2874
  3. 3. Representatives of two farmers' cooperatives were also among those summoned to the Wednesday hearing to speak out on the alleged modus operandi of big-time rice smugglers.According to Villar, legitimate farmers' groups are being used and funded by businessmen, through a broker, to obtain rice importation permits from the National Food Authority (NFA).The groups are then given commission for every sack of rice they win during the NFA bidding.Among the groups supposedly used as fronts were the Samahan ng Magsasaka sa Kapampangan at Katagalugan, and Sili Multi-purpose Cooperative.Maximo Hernandez, representative of Samahan ng Magsasaka sa Kapampangan at Katagalugan, lamented that after they were able to import 22,000 sacks of rice, they were not given incentives and a certificate of good standing by the Cooperatives Development Authority (CDA).He said unknowingly, their cooperative has been blacklisted by the Department of Justice (DOJ) due to the ongoing investigation on their supposed involvement in rice smuggling operations in Albay.Elpidio Mendoza, chairman of Sili Multi-purpose Cooperative, said they were also surprised when they found out that they were named as consignees of an illegal rice shipment that arrived at the Port of Legazpi, Albay.Both Hernandez and Mendoza lamented that they were just trying to make a living for their families, and insisted that they were not involved in smuggling and illegal transactions. David Lim's involvement Villar said the person who acted as the broker for the Albay rice shipments was a certain Eleonor Rodriguez.She said Rodriguez identified a certain Leah Echeveria as the one who funded the cooperatives to participate in the NFA private sector financed importation program.Echeveria is a former employee of DGL Trucks Inc. from 2009 to September 2012.She later worked for D-Uranium Enterprises, which is owned by Matilde Rubio Dinopol, who Villar said earlier worked for Nismo Trading in 2010.The senator noted that the telephone number of Nismo Trading is the same phone number of DGL Commodities Inc.In February 2013, Echeveria then transferred employment to D-Platinum Traders Enterprises, owned by Noreen Cabatbat Dingding, who earlier worked for DGL Trucks Inc. from 1999 to 2001 and for Nismo Trading from 2009 to 2011.Villar said the phone number of D-Platinum Traders Enterprises was the same with the number of DGL Trucks Inc.She pointed out that the "common denominator" in all of these companies is none other than David Lim.Lim, however, just said that the businesses D-Uranium Enterprises and D-Platinum Traders Enterprises sounded "familiar."Lim also said he does not know Dinopol, but admitted that Echeveria and Dingding were his former employees. Gov’t agencies to join forces in rice smuggling probe By Tetch Torres-Tupas INQUIRER.net 4:54 pm | Wednesday, January 22nd, 2014 MANILA, Philippines—Government agencies and its law enforcement arm may join forces to conduct a thorough investigation on the alleged rice smuggling activities in the country, newly appointed head of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) Virgilio Mendez told reporters Wednesday.Mendez told reporters that he had met with Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala Tuesday and discussed the smuggling issue.―That [meeting] is in relation with the possible joint efforts of the DA (Department of Agriculture), DOJ (Department Daily Rice E-Newsletter by Rice Plus Magazine www.ricepluss.com News and R&D Section mujajhid.riceplus@gmail.com Cell # 92 321 369 2874
  4. 4. of Justice), NBI and the Bureau of Customs (BOC) in so far as smuggling of rice is concerned,‖ Mendez said.―We will be collaborating with each other. We cannot perform the job without the cooperation of the other agency,‖ he added.At the same time, Mendez said whether Davidson Bangayan is David Tan is no longer an issue.―As we have mentioned earlier, we have been consistent with our position that the identity of Davidson or David is no longer an issue for us. We have enough evidence to prove that he is the one and the same person. On the identity issue, settled na kami doon,‖ Mendez said adding that their focus now is the rampant rice smuggling. Farm production falls short of 2013 target By: Orti Despuez, InterAksyon.com January 22, 2014 3:39 PM MANILA - Philippine farm output fell short of the government's target in 2013 after a series of calamities cut crop production. In a report, the Department of Agriculture (DA) today said the farm sector grew 1.15 percent last year, or below the 3-5 percent goal for the period.―Considering a very challenging year, this growth is significant,‖ Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala said.―It also reminds us how weather-dependent agriculture is, and therefore the need to promote and support diversification and value-adding in food processing is stronger than ever before,‖ Alcala said. Pulling down growth was the crops sub-sector, which accounted for 51 percent of agriculture and increased by only a percent year-on-year.The laggards were corn, coconut, sugarcane, banana, coffee, abaca, peanuts and Daily Rice E-Newsletter by Rice Plus Magazine www.ricepluss.com News and R&D Section mujajhid.riceplus@gmail.com Cell # 92 321 369 2874
  5. 5. calamansi.Earlier, the Bureau of Agricultural Statistics (BAS) reported that the country's corn harvest slipped 0.4 percent to 7.37 million metric tons last year from 7.4 million in 2012 after typhoons Gorio and Yolanda devastated farmlands in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao and the Visayas, respectively. The rice sub-sector bucked the trend among the country's crop output, with palay harvest having increased by 2.26 percent to 18.44 million metric tons last year from 18.03 million in 2012.BAS earlier reported that the expansion of land planted to the staple, as well as higher yield per hectare improved rice production.Another source of growth for agriculture last year was the livestock and poultry sector, which accounted for nearly a third of total output.The poultry sub-sector expanded 4.2 percent on the strength of chicken production, which increased five percent to 1.55 million metric tons in 2013 from 1.47 million the previous year. The livestock sub-sector also turned in better results, with dairy production up 5.47 percent, while that of hogs and cattle having increased by 1.95 percent and 1.76 percent, respectively.Last but not least, the fisheries sector, which accounted for 18 percent of total agriculture, increased its yield by 2.78 percent to P239.08 billion last year from P232.6 billion in 2012.―In all, these expansions in key sectors effectively cushioned the impact of the reduced harvests of other commodities as a result of typhoons that his the country, among other factors,‖ BAS said. Indonesian govt assures rice supplies to Jakarta safe Wed, January 22 2014 21:30 | 523 Views Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The Indonesian government gave assurance on Wednesday that rice supplies to Jakarta will not be disrupted despite flooding in rice producing areas in the past few days."Right now rice supplies to the Cipinang wholesale market are safe. There has been no disruption yet," Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs Hatta Rajasa stated while inspecting the Cipinang wholesale market in East Jakarta on Wednesday.During the visit, Hatta was accompanied by Agriculture Minister Suswono, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Minister Cicip Sharif Sutardjo, Deputy Trade Minister Bayu Krisnamurthi, President Director of State Logistics Agency (Bulog) Sutarto Alimoeso, and Chief of the Central Statistics Agency (BPS) Suryamin. Hatta added that rice supplies to the Cipinang wholesale market currently reached 1,500 tons per day."In case of shortage, Bulog will supply rice to the capital," he explained.The minister added that the floods that struck several parts of the country had raised rice price by Rp100 a kg due to transportation problem. Daily Rice E-Newsletter by Rice Plus Magazine www.ricepluss.com News and R&D Section mujajhid.riceplus@gmail.com Cell # 92 321 369 2874
  6. 6. "We have adequate stocks. The Bulog warehouse now holds approximately 2 million tons of rice stocks," he assured. Earlier, on Monday, Deputy Trade Minister Bayu Krisnamurthi stated that rice stocks at the Cipinang wholesale market were enough for another 11 to 12 days despite declining supplies due to flooding."The transportation of rice has been disrupted due to floods in Karawang and Cirebon. As a result, supplies fall to 2,100 tons from 3 thousand tons per day. But overall, stocks are still safe," he assured journalists during a press discussion.The Cipinang market currently held rice stocks of an estimated 32,700 tons. The stocks were expected to increase by 2 thousand tons in the next few days so that rice supplies in and around Jakarta would be safe, he pointed out."Right now the rice stocks are still safe as there has been no significant rice price hikes," Bayu noted. (Reporting by Subagyo/Uu.INE/KR-BSR/F001) Editor: Priyambodo RH Rice exports heading to South Korea Wed, 22 January 2014 Hor Kimsay Cambodian rice will soon make its way to South Korean shores after an agreement was inked yesterday between local exporter Amru Rice Cambodia and South Korean conglomerate Hanwha Corporation.The two companies will come together and start exporting to South Korea this month.―Our market in Europe is at its peak, so we are trying to diversify our markets in Asia, especially Korea,‖ Song Saran, chief executive officer of Amru Rice, said.The agreement was finalised yesterday in Phnom Penh at an official signing attended by company representatives and government officials from Cambodia and South Korea.An initial investment of $2 million from Hanwha will ensure that close to 5,000 tonnes of Cambodia’s jasmine rice will be sent to South Korea, a market traditionally dominated by Thai, US and Chinese exporters, according to Saran.Though the immediate focus is on exports to South Korea, Park Jae-hong, CEO of Hanwha, hinted at a potential rice mill investment in the future that would utilise the company’s global network.―Hanwha will consider to further extend its business in Cambodia, in the rice sector,‖ Park said.According to government data, Cambodia exported close to 379,000 tonnes of rice last year, an increase of 84 per cent from 2012.Amru Rice Cambodia exported about 51,000 tonnes, the second-largest among 84 exporters in the country. Cambodia targets 1 million tons of rice exports in 2015 MENAFN - 22/01/2014 (MENAFN) The Cambodian Minister of Commerce said the country expects to achieve its goal of exporting one million tons of milled rice next year, Xinhua reported.The minister said: "The country had exported more Daily Rice E-Newsletter by Rice Plus Magazine www.ricepluss.com News and R&D Section mujajhid.riceplus@gmail.com Cell # 92 321 369 2874
  7. 7. than 400,000 tons in 2013 and there is two years more toward the goal, so I do believe that the country can reach this target."Farmers in the Cambodian society form over 80 percent of the population, producing 9 million tons of paddy rice per year. After taking out local consumption, the country has 3 million tons of milled rice for exports each year. Suthep says govt fails to secure loans for rice subsidy Wednesday, 22 January 2014By MCOT BANGKOK, Jan 21 – The government was unsuccessful in getting loans from the Government Savings Bank (GSB) to subsidise the financially-ailing rice pledging scheme, protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban announced.Mr Suthep, secretary general of the People’s Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC), calmed GSB depositors and other clients, saying that the bank released a statement, reassuring the public that it would definitely not extend loans to the government.The GSB also allowed its employees to join the anti-government rallies, said Mr Suthep.Farmers would be paid for their rice if the PDRC wins its fight against the government, adding the present administration has monopolised rice trading – an unscrupulous act which had forced rice traders to close down their businesses. But the government could not release rice in its stockpiles which currently store about 17-18 million tonnes, he said.Mr Suthep said farmers have begun anti-government actions similar to those of the PDRC by sealing off provincial halls to pressure the government to pay them for the rice they have sold under the rice subsidy programme.Mr Suthep is scheduled to march from Lumpini rally site to nearby Trok Chan community today to urge people to come out on the streets to press the caretaker government to resign. Caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra yesterday expressed regret over the deaths and injuries of protesters and instructed police to speed up their hunt for culprits.She asked protesters to cooperate with police and military personnel for the sake of their safety and said she has assigned security-related authorities to assess if it would be necessary to enforce the emergency decree to deal with the situation.Ms Yingluck said the government would be willing to compensate those killed and injured in the violence but approval must come from the Election Commission.She called on the public not to disrupt the advance polls on Sunday, insisting that the country must move on and that the general election is part of democracy. Rice row could see Phichit leaders join Bangkok protest THE NATION January 23, 2014 1:00 am Daily Rice E-Newsletter by Rice Plus Magazine www.ricepluss.com News and R&D Section mujajhid.riceplus@gmail.com Cell # 92 321 369 2874
  8. 8. UPSET AT THE breakdown of the rice-pledging scheme, local leaders in Phichit are considering joining the People's Democratic Reform Committee's anti-government protest to pacify farmers who have not been paid for their crops.Payments to farmers participating in the ruling Pheu Thai Party's flagship populist programme have been delayed repeatedly for months.The Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives (BAAC) has said the government has not yet approved an additional budget for the scheme, so it cannot pay the hundreds of thousands of farmers who have pawned their paddy. In Phichit alone, more than 40,000 farmers have gone unpaid. Nearly 100 kamnans and village heads gathered at the BAAC's Phichit branch to demand updates on the scheme's payment and ask that the branch refrain from pressing farmers for repayments of loans they had to take out to cover expenses while waiting for their income from the scheme. Some 300 kamnans and village heads also rallied in front of Phichit Provincial Administration Organisation. Many were discussing the idea of supporting the PDRC, which has staged mass demonstrations against the government for a couple of months, hoping to implement reform ahead of elections. Kittisak Rattanawaraha, chairman of the Northern Farmers Network, said separately that farmers from five provinces would converge on Bangkok to rally against the government. "We will use 100 farm vehicles per province," he said. In Angthong, more than 400 farmers submitted an ultimatum to Governor Pawin Chamniprasart to facilitate the payment for pledged rice by January 27. "If there's no positive response, farmers across the province will stage a big demonstration," said Songpon Poonsawas, chairman of the Angthong Farmers Confederation. Police have recommended that public prosecutors indict Kittipong Saenworakul for alleged embezzlement in the ricepledging scheme. The Public Warehouse Organisa-tion under the Commerce Ministry has accused Kittipong of failing to deliver more than 1,260 tonnes of rice to the scheme. Corruption has reportedly plagued the scheme, which has incurred huge losses. Nigeria loses over N110bn as revenue on rice drops by 90.6% in 2013 January 22, 2014 | Filed under: Maritime | Author: Uzoamaka Anagor The Federal Government has in the last 12 months lost over N110 billion, being the amount that was supposed to have accrued into the Federation Account as import duty collected on imported rice by the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS).The revenue collected on imported rice in the last 12 months since the nation changed its fiscal policy on imported rice to 110 percent import duty and levy, aimed at reducing the volume of imported rice and encouraging increased domestic rice production, has dropped by 90.6 percent.Statistics show that in 2011, Apapa port, which specialises in handling bulk cargo, especially rice, generated the total sum of N131.4 billion as revenue from rice. Daily Rice E-Newsletter by Rice Plus Magazine www.ricepluss.com News and R&D Section mujajhid.riceplus@gmail.com Cell # 92 321 369 2874
  9. 9. The above mentioned figure dropped by 4.59 percent to N125.3 in 2012, while the revenue witnessed a drastic drop of 90.6 percent to N11.8 billion in 2013.―Despite the fact that rice used to be the mainstay of Apapa port as a break bulk handling port, rice is not coming into Apapa port at all and this is really affecting our revenue collection,‖ said Charles Edike, area controller of the Apapa Area 1 command of the Nigeria Customs Services.A breakdown of statistics as given to BusinessDay by Edike shows that in January 2013, revenue on rice contributed 4.5 percent to the total revenue collected by the command. In February, it contributed 0.9 percent; 7 percent in March, 0.9 percent in April, 22.2 percent in May, 132 percent in June, 0.0 percent in July, 0.2 percent in August, and 0.0 percent in September, October, November and December.In 2012, before the implementation of the new fiscal policy on rice, the revenue on rice contributed 36.9 percent in the month of January, 22.7 percent in February, 32.0 percent in March, 71 percent April, 80 percent in May, 69.2 percent in June, 5 percent in July, 2 percent in August, 11 percent in September, 15 percent in October, 23 percent in November, and 96.1 percent in December. In 2011, the revenue on rice contributed over 9.7 percent in the month of January, 30 percent in February, 78.4 percent in March, 39 percent April, 71 percent in May, 83 percent in June, 95 percent in July, 41 percent in August, 78 percent in September, 31 percent in October, 22.5 percent in November, and 37.6 percent in December.According to statistics from Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Nigerians consume about 5 million metric tonnes of rice annually, which sums to about 100 million 50kg bags of rice. Therefore, the total rice consumption in the country is in excess of N1 trillion annually at a minimum price of N10,000 per 50kg bag.Also, about 2.9 million metric tonnes, which amounts to 58 million 50kg bags of rice, is the estimated quantity of rice that is produced locally, while the remaining 2.1 million metric tonnes of rice is imported into the country through the seaports annually. Confirming this in an interview, Vicky Haastrup, executive vice chairman, ENL Consortium Limited, the operator of Terminal C and D of Apapa port in Lagos, told Business and Maritime West Africa that rice is a commodity which Nigeria has completely lost to Benin Republic since the Federal Government imposed the 110 percent duty on rice.By her estimates, government has lost over N80 billion from her terminal alone in 2013 because rice rarely comes to Nigerian ports now, yet there is no scarcity of foreign or imported rice in the Nigerian market.―Given the 110 percent duty, the landing cost of rice became very high for importers to pay, that is why importers now prefer Benin port where the landing cost is cheaper. Nigeria is not producing enough rice and the local production cannot satisfy the local demand for a population of 170 million. Therefore, imposing such high customs duty will help the importers to take cargo to the neighbouring ports where it is cheaper to import,‖ she said. Continuing, she added that ENL handled only one cargo of rice in 2013 compared to the previous years where rice vessels started from September to congest the port due to the high importation that came with the festive season. Daily Rice E-Newsletter by Rice Plus Magazine www.ricepluss.com News and R&D Section mujajhid.riceplus@gmail.com Cell # 92 321 369 2874
  10. 10. Govt to push on with rice scheme loan Published: 22 Jan 2014 :Newspaper section: News The caretaker government has decided to proceed with plans to borrow 130 billion baht to fund its controversial rice-pledging scheme.The Election Commission (EC) has resolved it lacks the authority to approve the loan.The caretaker cabinet on Tuesday endorsed an increase in the 2014 public debt plan from 1.316 trillion baht to 1.324 trillion baht.The Finance Ministry has incorporated the 130-billion-baht loan into the debt plan.Once borrowed, the money will be secured for the Bank of Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives (BAAC) to pay farmers for pledged rice. Farmers in several provinces have protested and blocked roads after the caretaker government failed to keep its promise to pay money owed to them under the scheme by Jan 15.Caretaker Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Kittiratt Na-Ranong blamed the late payments on the Democrat Party's call for a review of the budget, followed by their mass resignation before the House dissolution.The constitution bans a caretaker government from making any decisions which could financially burden the next government.Mr Kittiratt insisted the government still has adequate money to finance the rice scheme, but said the payments require EC approval.According to the finance minister, the 130-billion-baht loan is for the 2013-2014 pledging scheme which has been approved by cabinet since Sept 3, before the House was dissolved, under the total budget of 270 billion baht for the scheme. Mr Kittiratt explained to the EC at Thammasat University Rangsit Campus about the need for the loan.He said the loan is not for a new project which will obligate the next government or be prohibited by the law."The ricepledging scheme is one of several projects which were previously approved by the cabinet and does not create new debt obligations for the next government," he said.Still, the EC decided on Tuesday it does not have the authority to approve the caretaker government's loan.EC secretary-general Puchong Nutrawong said the government has to make the call on the loan, because the rice-pledging scheme uses funds from the 2014 annual budget, supervised by the Finance Ministry.Documents submitted by Mr Kittiratt to the EC suggested the government could proceed with the loan and would take responsibility for it if any legal complications arise. Meanwhile, pressure is mounting on the government as rice farmers in various provinces prepare to shut down more roads and government offices after failing to receive the funds owed to them for pledged rice.Phichit farmers intend to join forces with anti-government protests in Bangkok this week.Farmers from five central provinces plan to shut down the Asian Highway in Phrom Buri district of Sing Buri until they receive their funds from the government.The roadblock will take place after farmers meet the Lawyers Council of Thailand to discuss legal assistance to pursue fraud charges against the caretaker government. Lawyers agree to help farmers over rice Published: 22 Jan 2014 at 05.25:Newspaper section: News Daily Rice E-Newsletter by Rice Plus Magazine www.ricepluss.com News and R&D Section mujajhid.riceplus@gmail.com Cell # 92 321 369 2874
  11. 11. The Lawyers Council of Thailand has agreed to help farmers sue the government for payment delays under the government's ricepledging scheme.Unpaid farmers in Uttaradit block road No.11 linking Phitsanulok and Uttaradit provinces yesterday. They want the caretaker government to pay them the money it owes under the ricepledging scheme. The council assured the farmers that there is "zero" chance they will lose the case.The council and the farmers are also considering filing a criminal suit against those involved in the implementation of the scheme for fraud and violating Section 84 of the constitution, that supports free and fair economic systems.Dej-udom Krairit, president of the council, said a civil suit would first be lodged in three cases to demand payment of the money owed to the farmers for their rice under the government scheme months ago.In the first case, the Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Co-operatives (BAAC), the caretaker ministers involved in the rice scheme, and the political parties involved will be named as the first, second, and third defendants.The BAAC is to be sued for failing to pay rice-pledging money while ministers and parties involved will be sued for their involvement in the scheme's implementation, said Mr Dej-udom. The farmers want their overdue payments paid plus 7.5% interest, he said.In the second case, the farmers intend to sue the BAAC for violating the rice-pledging contracts by refusing to pay the farmers money as it was required to under the scheme, he said.In the third civil case, a certain number of farmers will sue ministers, parties, and other parties for embezzlement because the contracted rice millers refused to give them a formal rice-pledging certificate which is required to claim their money from the BAAC, said Mr Dej-udom.Some farmers have been waiting for months for payment under the scheme. The government is struggling to arrange payment as it is now in a caretaker capacity. The government should have been a sole defendant in this third civil case but unlike in the US legal system, the Thai government is not considered a juristic person, he said.The council also agreed to set up another legal team to study the possibility of filing a criminal suit against those involved in the implementation of the rice scheme for defrauding the farmers, he said.The team would determine whether the scheme is deemed a violation of Section 84 of the charter which ensures free and fair economic systems.The government is accused of interfering with rice prices by offering to pay the farmers for their rice at prices far higher than the median prices in the market and monopolising the rice trade system in the country.These decisions were reached at a meeting between the council and affected farmers from 19 provinces led by Prasit Boonchuey, president of the Thai Farmers Association. The meeting was held at the council's headquarters on Ratchadamnoen Avenue in Bangkok.The council needs two months to compile evidence before formally lodging the lawsuits.The affected farmers would not be charged for any legal costs as these cases are considered consumer-related ones, said Mr Dej-udom. Daily Rice E-Newsletter by Rice Plus Magazine www.ricepluss.com News and R&D Section mujajhid.riceplus@gmail.com Cell # 92 321 369 2874