25th january,2014 daily global rice e newsletter by riceplus magazine


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25th january,2014 daily global rice e newsletter by riceplus magazine

  1. 1. 25th January , 2014 TOP Contents - Tailored for YOU Latest News Headlines…  Vietnam Jan rice exports fall 21pc y/y to 350,000 tonnes  Thai rice subsidies: damned if you do, and don’t  Thai government seeks go-ahead to raise $4 billion to pay rice farmers  Govt vows to sell out rice in the next six months  Rice importers still need to secure permit from NFA  Rice Industry: Guyana's Most Productive Agricultural Sector in 2013  Pakistan receives $4m rice export orders from China  PM dodges rice graft charges  Farmers end blockade  Scientist - Agronomist/Seed Specialist  Senators to DOJ: Legal stand on rice import quotas needed  National rice self-sufficiency goal  India’s rice output to fall, Pakistan’s to rise  India West Bengal State Lacks Funds to Procure Paddy Rice; Bihar State Announces Bonus on MSP of Paddy 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
  2. 2.  Oryza White Rice Index Holds at $463 per Ton; Thailand Political Storm Continues  BOC seizes 10,000 bags of rice  Flood-tolerant rice shows improved yields in India NEWS DETAILS: Vietnam Jan rice exports fall 21pc y/y to 350,000 tonnes 24.01.2014 Vietnam's rice exports this month would fall 21.3 percent from a year ago to an estimated 350,000 tonnes, the government said on Friday.Revenue from rice exports would also drop 19 percent from last January to $165 million, the General Statistics Office said in its monthly report.Vietnam, the world's third-largest exporter after India and Thailand, has projected to sell between 6.5 million and 7 million tonnes of the grain abroad this year, against 6.7 million tonnes shipped in 2013. Thai rice subsidies: damned if you do, and don’t Published: Friday, 24 Jan 2014 | 12:00 AM ET By: Leslie Shaffer | Writer for CNBC.comiland's rice industrynder pressure: Pro Vichai Sriprasert, President and CEO of Riceland International talks about how the rice industry has suffered under the government's rice scheme and the country's political conflicts.By any measure, Thailand's rice subsidy program has been an expensive boondoggle – and a big driver of the current political unrest – but ending it will bring its own troubles."The whole country, the rice industry has suffered a lot. The quantity of exports declined about 35 percent (and) revenue declined by 25 percent" in the program's first year, said Vichai Sriprasert, CEO of Riceland International, one of Thailand's biggest rice exporters."We used to be the rice champion of the world in (terms of) 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
  3. 3. exports," he told CNBC. "With the program, we lost our championship. We became the third (biggest exporter). Revenue went down, quantity went down." The program was meant to buy rice from farmers at much higher than market rates, aiming to increase rural incomes to stimulate consumption, but farmers haven't been paid in around four months as funds ran low.Some farmers, who generally offer a solid base of support for the current government, are falling deeply into debt as they borrow from moneylenders. One of the demands of anti-government protestors currently crippling the capital is to end populist programs such as the rice subsidies, viewing them as vote buying.The rice subsidy program lost around $4.3 billion on the 2011-2012 crop, the last time losses were reported.Vichai believes the program has been badly managed, estimating at least a third of the $24 billion in total funding was lost through stealing and corruption and only about a third actually reached farmers. He wants the program to be completely eradicated, saying it has distorted the rice market. "It's a huge problem," he said, noting the government has around 20 million tons of rice stockpiled, equivalent to around two years of the country's "best exports," with another 10 million tons from the current yearly crop on the way.The rice program is likely to come to an end, whether or not the current government survives the latest round of political turmoil, Pimpaka Nichgaroon, head of research at Thanachart Securities, said in a note. She noted the program has already nearly come to a halt as it is facing fresh legal limitations and she expects other populist policies will see major cuts. There are solid indications that the populist programs may have helped to alleviate poverty in rural Thailand, with poverty reduced from a peak of around 42.6 percent of the population in 2000 after the Asian Financial Crisis, to around 13.2 percent in 2011, according to the World Bank; most of the poor live in the country's rural areas.Thanachart estimates the yearly investment in the rice subsidy program at around 3 percent of gross domestic product (GDP). Some analysts put Bangkok's contribution to GDP at around 30 percent, indicating regions receiving the subsidies are significant contributors to the country's economic growth."We see disruption to (the subsidies) curbing the purchasing power of upcountry people," which is likely to hurt retail sales, Thanachart said in a note. 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. "Upcountry growth has played a vital role in driving retail industry growth." It downgraded the retail sector to "underweight" from "overweight."To be sure, not everyone thinks ending the subsidies would hurt retailers much."We've only had (the program) for the past two years," Nirgunan Tiruchelvam, an analyst at Standard Chartered, told CNBC. Farmers don't appear to have adjusted their consumption patterns, he said, noting sales growth at specific companies were steady with levels prior to the subsidy's introduction. He also believes clearing the government's stockpile will lead to increases in rice prices ahead.In addition, not everyone is convinced that ending the rice subsidies will mean the end of populist measures."Obviously, the farmer should be helped. Subsidies should go directly to supplement their income. We call it income support rather than price support. That would not distort the market," said Riceland's Vichai, who noted that he wants to see current government out of power. In Snap: Bags of rice are displayed for sale at a market in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Thai government seeks go-ahead to raise $4 billion to pay rice farmers BANGKOK Fri Jan 24, 2014 2:53am EST The Thai government has sought a ruling from an administrative court on whether it can raise 130 billion baht ($4 billion) to pay rice farmers who have been waiting for months for money after selling their grain into a state intervention scheme.Farmers are blocking provincial roads in protest and some have threatened to travel to Bangkok to join demonstrators who are trying to topple the government.Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra has dissolved parliament and called a snap election for February 2. She now heads a caretaker administration that is not supposed to make decisions that bind the next government. "On the rice funding, the Finance Ministry just submitted the plan to the Council of State today, which is expected to take time to consider it," Suwit Rojanawanich, an adviser to the ministry's Public Debt Management Office, told Reuters."We will have to wait for what the council says before proceeding on anything," he added.The intervention scheme has run into funding problems because the government has been unable to sell the rice it bought from farmers. It promised them a price well above the market rate, which made the export price uncompetitive.The government has said it would spend 270 billion baht on the intervention scheme in the 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. crop year from October 2013.The state farm bank that is managing the scheme, the Bank of Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives, has just raised 32.58 billion baht in a bond issue this month. Suwit said the money had been transferred to the BAAC on Thursday.In November, the bank only managed to raise half of the 75 billion baht bond it offered, so it reopened the bond this month to help get funds to meet late payments to rice farmers.The rice scheme, which has cost the government billions of dollars, has fuelled the political crisis that is being played out on the streets of Bangkok, with critics saying it is riddled with corruption and a drain on the state budget.The cost of the scheme has led to a warning from rating agency Moody's and a rebuke from the International Monetary Fund about the fiscal impact. ($1=32.87 baht) (Reporting by Kitiphong Thaichareon; Editing by Alan Raybould and Alex Richardson) Govt vows to sell out rice in the next six months Friday, 24 January 2014By NNT BANGKOK, 22 January 2014 The government has vowed to sell 30 billion baht worth of pledged rice a month for the next six months. The national rice policy committee's meeting, chaired by the Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, has agreed to seek the Council of State's opinion on whether the caretaker government has authority to borrow funds to support the rice pledging program.The rice scheme has been plaguing the caretaker government, which has missed payments to a large number of farmers, who have demanded that the government pay them no later than January 25, otherwise they will stage a major protest.Deputy Commerce Minister Yanyong Puangraj said after the meeting that the ministry would spare no effort to sell at least 30 billion baht worth of rice in its stockpile a month for the next six months. Rice importers still need to secure permit from NFA By Ruji Peter S. Abat Friday, January 24, 2014 RICE importers are still required to secure permits from the National Food Authority (NFA) even as the exemption from the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (Gatt) of the World Trade Organization (WTO) has expired, an official of the Department of Agriculture (DA)-Davao insisted.DA-Davao regional director Remelyn Recoter, in an interview at the Apo View Hotel recently, said that in connection with the contention of Joseph Ngo who has a pending case before the Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 16, a private entity cannot question the 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. provision of the Gatt since the WTO is a multinational organization composed of member governments.Thus, it should be the government who should raise the dispute to WTO in behalf of that private entity, Recoter said. "From our end, we are committed to the minimum access volume (MAV) which is limited to around 350,000 metric tons of rice imports. And of course, as part of the procedure in clearing the rice imports from the Bureau of Customs (BOC), importers should secure a permit from the NFA who is one of the monitoring bodies of the MAV," he said.Recoter re-echoed the contention of the NFA that Ngo should not question the provisions of Gatt but rather focus on the laws of the country.The director also said the country has a pending request for the extension of the quantitative restrictions on rice imports so importers should not take advantage of this as excessive importations will cripple local farmers."Hopefully, the rce smuggling would be stopped since initially it will hurt our local farmers and in turn, the government will incur deficits in taxes," Recoter added. Rice Industry: Guyana's Most Productive Agricultural Sector in 2013 Georgetown, Jan 24 (Prensa Latina) Rice industry turned out to be Guyana''s most productive economic activity in 2013 with a production record of more than 535 thousand tons, the local media highlights today.This number means a 27 percent rise regarding the 423 thousand tons produced in 2012, referred the digital journal Guyana Chronicle.This is the first time that a Caribbean country produces more than 500 thousand tons in a year, which made the peasants who work in this sector one of the most effective rice producers in the Americas. The industry success is an acknowledgement to the national farmers' self-sacrifice who overcame hard weather conditions, stressed the media.In 2013, farmers faced the challenges of drought and insect pest during the first harvest, and heavy rains during the second.Nevertheless, investments were made in the sector to boost the capacity of the industry. The acquisition of more than a thousand trucks and 90 harvesters during the year clearly demonstrates it.Guyana's 2013 rice exports increased nearly 395 thousand tons, approximately 58 percent of this cereal was exported to Venezuela and in less degree to other major buyers such as Europe, Trinidad and Tobago, and other countries in the Caribbean.It is worth-highlighting the government's support to the industry, which invested more than 400 million dollars to acquire urea, a key product for fertilizers. sgl/lvd/acl/dav Modificado el ( viernes, 24 de enero de 2014 ) Pakistan receives $4m rice export orders from ChinaBy Tanveer Ahmed January 24, 2014 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. KARACHI: Pakistani rice exporters have managed to secure $4 million worth of export orders of the commodity from China during the recently concluded visit of rice exporters to the country auguring well for future of commodity’s export. This was stated by Rice Exporters Association of Pakistan (REAP) Senior Vice Chairman Chela Ram KK, while briefing members of the REAP about the salutary aspects of the 11 days tour of a rice exporters delegation to China comprising 25 members which concluded on January 15. The delegation during their visit had extensive meetings with traders in China’s cities of Beijing, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Zhongshan. The response displayed by the Chinese importers for Pakistani rice is overwhelming as compared to rice imported from Thailand and Vietnam as the Pakistani quality has drawn attention of Chinese importers which appear to be inclined for importing bulk of the volume during the coming season. He said last calendar year, Pakistan’s total rice export to China starting July 2012 to June 31, 2013 was worth $244 million weighing around 5.89 metric tonnes.With the successful current visit of the REAP delegation to China with enhanced access to rice importers and efforts to create further room for export of Pakistani rice in that receptive market, the export volume can be anticipated to surge sharply. “We had very interactive and fruitful meetings with China’s concerned authorities and leading rice buyers as Chinese people like Pakistani rice due to its quality and aroma,” he added. He hoped that the dream of exporting around 10 million tones of irri-6 rice to China can be transformed into reality if sustained efforts to market Pakistani rice to China are pursued with vigour as the target is achievable in view of more than 1.3 billion Chinese population.The REAP vice chairman informed that the overall export of Pakistani export during the current calendar year starting from July 2013, appears very encouraging as until December 2013, the total export volume stands at 159,000 metric tonnes valuing around $56 PM dodges rice graft charges NACC unlikely to push for action before poll 24 Jan 2014 at 06.40 Newspaper section: News The National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) is unlikely to conclude whether caretaker Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra will be charged in the rice-pledging corruption case before the Feb 2 general election. More than 200 rice farmers in Kamphaeng Phet are blocking the Asian Highway, joining similar protests in several other provinces to put pressure on the government to speed up overdue rice-pledging scheme payments. TAWATCHAI KHEMGUMNERD 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. The NACC said its panel looking into the matter had not obtained sufficient evidence to decide on Ms Yingluck's fate, though the investigation had made progress.Revealing this confidential information would make it even harder for the NACC to investigate further, NACC deputy secretary-general Witthaya Arkompitak said.Meanwhile, more rice farmers affected by the rice-pledging scheme have started blocking roads in their provinces demanding payment for their rice pledged under the scheme, which has been overdue for months. In Phitsanulok, more than 500 protesters gathered at the Indo-China intersection blocking the road and demanded they be paid about 6 billion baht of overdue payments before Jan 31, or else they will step up their protest.If the government fails to make the rice-pledging payments in time, the farmers will consider joining the People's Democratic Reform Committee (PDRC) in Bangkok, they said.The Phitsanulok farmers also demanded the government cover the interest on the loans they had sought using their rice-pledging certificates as collateral. They said they had applied for the loans because they needed money to survive while they waited for their payments from the government.They will continue to block the roads until they get a satisfactory answer from the government.In Kamphaeng Phet, more than 200 rice farmers have started to block the Nakhon Sawan-Kamphaeng Phet road with their tractors and motorcycles in a similar protest.Cars travelling between the North and the Central region through Kamphaeng Phet had to use a bypass to avoid the blocked road. Surachet Siniang, chairman of the rice farmers' club of the province, said about 40,000 farmers are waiting for their payments which come to about 10 billion baht in total, and they have yet to receive a clear answer from the government about when they will get paid.In Ratchaburi, more than 500 rice farmers have decided to block the Wang Manao intersection that serves as a gateway to the southern region.The road-block protest in Ratchaburi is expected to take place on Friday, said Wichit Phanphian, president of Ratchaburi's rice farmer council.About 300 farmers from Sing Buri, Lop Buri, Suphan Buri and Ang Thong have started to block the Asian Highway, both inbound and outbound lanes, in Sing Buri.This protest has resulted in serious traffic congestion.Meanwhile, Prapat Panyachartraksa, chairman of the National Farmers Council, said farmers could be paid for their pledged rice within three weeks."Caretaker Commerce Minister Niwatthamrong Bunsongphaisan assured me on the phone on Monday that farmers would be paid for their pledged rice within three weeks," he told reporters at a seminar on political deadlock held at Kasetsart University on Thursday. Farmers end blockade Published: 24 Jan 2014 at 16.37 Online news: RATCHABURI - Around 300 farmers ended their Rama II Road blockade on Friday after officials promised to settle late rice-pledging scheme payments by the end of this month.Around 300 farmers ended their Rama II Road blockade in Ratchaburi province on Friday after officials promised to pay them the money they are owed under the rice-pledging scheme by the end of this month. (Photo by Sunant Ochakachorn) 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 angry farmers had blocked the inbound section of the road in Ratchaburi province's Pak Tho district because they are yet to receive payments for rice sold to government under its subsidy scheme.They ended their rally after talks with deputy provincial governor Narong Krongchon and district chief Pairat Chanpholhom, but protest leader Somsak Tamningam promised the group would return to Wang Manao intersection on Jan 31 and block both directions of the road if they do not receive the money by the end of the month as promised.The farmers criticised the caretaker government for trying to win the election while ignoring their problems.Their protest caused a traffic jam for five kilometres on the inbound road from southern provinces to Bangkok. Scientist - Agronomist/Seed Specialist Location: n/a The successful candidate will develop and lead a research and extension program on seed systems and innovative crop and natural resources management approaches for intensifying and diversifying rice production in irrigated and rainfed lowland environments of East and Southern Africa. Particular emphasis will be on Tanzania, Mozambique, Burundi, Uganda and Kenya. The research will contribute to Theme 3 of the Global Rice Science Partnership (GRiSP): “Ecological and sustainable management of rice-based production systems”. The scientist will collaborate closely with teams of plant breeders, seed specialists, crop protection staff, social scientists and others working on integrated solutions for future rice-based cropping systems. In collaboration with partners he/she will help in coordinating the development of effective seed system and conduct research on nutrient and crop management solutions, with a particular focus on management options for newly released varieties. He/she will develop principles and decision tools for knowledge dissemination to researchers and professional extension staff. This position is based at IRRI Country Office in Qualification requirements - PhD in Agronomy, Crop Physiology, Seed Systems or other relevant fields; - At least 2 years postgraduate research experience. Skills required - Strong background in field-oriented research and extension activities; - Excellent interpersonal and communication skills. 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 Burundi.
  10. 10. Application process Screening starts immediately as applications are received. Interested candidates should submit CV with a cover letter stating motivation to apply for the position. Candidates should apply online (click Internationally Recruited Staff and look for Scientist – Agronomist/Seed Specialist, Click and Apply) on or before 3 February 2014. For complete job details, please check our website. IRRI is an Equal Opportunity Employer that values diversity. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply. IRRI regrets that only shortlisted applicants will be notified. Senators to DOJ: Legal stand on rice import quotas needed BY AYEE MACARAIG POSTED ON 01/22/2014 2:30 PM | UPDATED 01/22/2014 9:13 PM'WEAKENS CUSTOMS.' Senate President Franklin Drilon called on Justice Secretary Leila de Lima to clarify the government's legal stand on importing rice to guide the Bureau of Customs in going after shipments lacking permits. Photo by Alex Nuevaespaña/Senate PRIB MANILA, Philippines – Senate President Franklin Drilon urged Justice Secretary Leila de Lima to clarify a legal issue on rice importation that threatens to undermine the government’s campaign against smuggling.In a Senate hearing on rice smuggling on Wednesday, January 22, Drilon and his colleagues asked the Department of Justice (DOJ) to issue a legal opinion on whether or not the Philippines can still impose rice importation quotas.Rice importers have argued that the special treatment that the World Trade Organization (WTO) gave the Philippines to impose quantitative restrictions on rice importation 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. already expired in June 2012. The importers said the lapse allows them to import rice without permits.Drilon told De Lima: “Apparently, importers are taking a hiatus by seeking injunctions from the court. It’s important that you should issue a legal opinion so we know where we stand. It weakens the Bureau of Customs’ position unless something definitive comes from your office.”In the hearing, Bureau of Customs (BOC) Commissioner John Philip Sevilla said that rice importers have been citing the lapse to challenge the bureau’s seizure of shipments lacking permits.“The problem since the day I assumed office [in December 2013] is that our orders to maintain rice in various ports have been the subject of injunctions from regional trial courts, specifically in Davao, Manila, and Batangas,” Sevilla said.“The BOC is not in the position to make trade policy. We just follow the law and the courts. We have no choice but to follow. So when there is an injunction, we have to release [confiscated] rice,” he added. Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala said it was his department’s position that the quotas will remain in place until 2017 while the Philippines is negotiating with countries about its WTO commitment.Republic Act 8178 or the Agriculture Tarrification Act is the law imposing quotas on rice importation.Agriculture Committee Chairperson Senator Cynthia Villar said that for her panel, Philippine laws “have supremacy” over the implementation of the WTO agreement.Senators Alan Peter Cayetano and Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr supported Drilon’s call.“I have to echo the necessity of an opinion from the DOJ. Napapaikutan tayo (They are going around our laws). They're hiding behind gray areas. That’s difficult for the Bureau of Customs,” Marcos said. De Lima: We’re studying it De Lima responded that her department is already studying the matter, and is looking at various interpretations to find a “middle ground.”“Our legal department has an initial position. I tend to agree that in the strict legal sense, we are bound by the WTO. There’s got to be actions to address the hiatus,” De Lima said.Yet the justice secretary also said that the DOJ came across jurisprudence where a court ruled against a judge who issued an injunction.“We’re looking at the issue of jurisdiction. In the regional trial court cases, the BOC is represented by the Solicitor General. The Office of the Solicitor General has in fact filed motions for reconsideration in these cases. The basic premise, the central argument posed by the OSG, is that domestic laws are [superior to] international agreements.”“We need a more definite opinion,” De Lima conceded. ‘Farmers very angry’ Farmers groups insisted that there was no contradiction between the Philippines’ WTO agreements and local laws.Ernesto Ordoñez, chairman of the Alyansa Agrikultura, said that during an international meeting in Bali, Indonesia, last year, there was no complaint about the Philippines’ quotas, and the government made it clear that it was still negotiating.“The Davao court injunction is ridiculous. We will challenge that before the Supreme Court…. The WTO allows quantitative restrictions. There is no problem,” Ordoñez said.Ordoñez 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
  12. 12. reminded the legislators and officials that Filipino farmers are the victims of smuggling “We farmers are very angry. Even as you look for [smuggler David] Tan, smuggled rice is going back to smugglers.” The Philippines is one of the world's largest rice importers. – Rappler.com National rice self-sufficiency goal Posted by Online on Jan 24th, 2014 Part of its thrust to achieve rice self-sufficiency in the country through its Food Staples Sufficiency Program (FSSP) 2011-2016, the Department of Agriculture (DA) recently convened grains retailers, wholesalers, and other key players in the rice industry at the National Grains Retailers/Wholesalers Conference, the biggest gathering of the rice industry sector in 2013. The Conference hoped to muster strategies and gather support for the achievement of the DA from the marketing arm of the rice sector, particularly the rice retailers and wholesalers.The farmers’ sector as represented by the regional federation of irrigators’ associations and the small water impounding system associations all over the country provides inputs while the DA regional field offices, attached agencies, and bureaus such as the National Food Authority (NFA), National Irrigation Administration (NIA), Philippine Center for Post-Harvest Development and Mechanization (PhilMech), Bureau of Soils and Water Management (BSWM) set the direction and provide the support mechanisms in achieving the goals of the program.The DA’s FSSP 2011-2016 is aimed at achieving self-sufficiency in food staples, defining self-sufficiency as satisfying domestic requirement for food, seeds, processing, and feeds through domestic production to keep pace with the rice requirements of the country’s growing population. The key goal is to produce the country’s requirements in 2013, strengthen national production resilient to climate change beyond 2013, and increase total production from 15.77 million metric tons (MT) in 2010 to 22.73 million MT by 2016.The DA said that private sector participation is vital in achieving the goals of the program. The National Grains Retailers/Wholesaler Conference is also aimed at strengthening public and private partnership by identifying the support activities of the various rice industry sectors namely, wholesalers, retailers, and farmers.We congratulate the Department of Agriculture headed by Secretary Proceso J. Alcala and its National Rice Program headed by its Coordinator, Assistant Secretary Dante S. Delima, in their continued efforts to boost domestic rice production and, therefore, achieve national rice self-sufficiency for the people of our Republic of the Philippines. CONGRATULATIONS AND MABUHAY! 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
  13. 13. India’s rice output to fall, Pakistan’s to rise MR SUBRAMANI CHENNAI, JANUARY 23: India’s rice production is likely to be lower at 103 million tonnes (mt) this crop year to June, while exports could drop by 0.5 mt, according to the US Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service.Pakistan, on the other hand, will see its production and exports rise by 0.4 mt, the service said in its Rice Outlook. The projection for rice production is against last year’s 104 mt and a record 105.3 mt the year before. Adverse weather Though area under rice increased this year in India and China, lower yield in both the countries is seen as the factor behind lower production. “The yield decline is partly due to adverse weather conditions,” the outlook said.Three cyclones affecting rice growing areas in Andhra Pradesh and Odisha; and deficient rainfall in West Bengal, the biggest rice producer in the country, are seen as reasons for the fall in production.The Agriculture Ministry is yet to make any projection on rice production for this crop year, though it sees total foodgrain production exceeding 260 mt. It had projected production at 92.32 mt for the current kharif marketing season against 92.76 mt a year ago.Raising milled production of rice to 471.1 mt for the current crop year, the Outlook pegged Pakistan crop higher at 6.4 mt against 5.8 mt last year. Though exports from India are expected to be lower, it will still continue to top the global exporters’ list at 10 million tonnes. Last year, it is estimated to have shipped out 10.5 million tonnes. Export growth Vietnam, Thailand and Pakistan are expected to witness growth in rice exports this year. Global rice export growth is seen driven mainly by West Africa and China. West Africa is a major buyer of Indian non-basmati rice in recent years.The views of rice trade on export prospects are mixed. Vijay Setia, former President of AllIndia Rice Exporters’ Association, said regular demand for non-basmati from West Africa and for basmati from the Gulf, US and Europe will result in higher exports.“We are one of the most competitive origins in the rice market and we see demand from every source,” he said. India exports rice to about 140 countries.RS Seshadri, 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
  14. 14. Director of Tilda Riceland, said that there was a possibility of exports slipping a bit this year. However, nonbasmati exports could make up for an expected drop in sales to Iran. Thailand factor India’s exports have been helped by a weak rupee and a rice procurement programme in Thailand at rates that are higher than global prices. Besides, India also enjoysfreight advantage in shipping to Gulf and West Africa.The outlook said that Thailand’s exports could rise to 8.5 mt from 6.7 mt this year. Vietnam’s exports could rise to 7.5 mt from 7.2 mt. Currently, India’s 25 per cent broken white rice is quoted at $350-360 a tonne, Thailand is quoting it at $390-400 and Vietnam at $375-385. Pakistan’s quote for the variety is $345-355 a tonne. (This article was published on January 23, 2014) Keywords: US Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service, India, Rice production, Rice output, Pakistan, India West Bengal State Lacks Funds to Procure Paddy Rice; Bihar State Announces Bonus on MSP of Paddy Rice Jan 24, 2014 India’s eastern state of West Bengal is planning to use private rice millers to procure paddy rice from farmers earlier than usual due to lack of funds with the government to procure paddy rice directly.Rice production in West Bengal was estimated to fall to around 13 million tons this year due to adverse weather conditions, but the state produced around 15.3 million tons. Meanwhile, government officials say that paddy rice procurement by government agencies stands at around 88,058 tons, which is just about 7% of the targeted 1.3 million tons. The government has also discontinued the Rs. 70 per quintal (about $11 per ton) bonus on paddy support price in 2012 due to lack of funds. Higher production and lower procurement have led to decline in paddy rice prices. Local sources say that farmers are forced to sell their paddy rice at around Rs. 1,280 per quintal (about $ 207 per ton) to private traders, which is down about 3% from the minimum government support price (MSP) of Rs. 1,310 per quintal (about $212 per ton). The West Bengal government says that early procurement of levy rice by millers will strengthen paddy prices and encourage farmers to re-invest in the boro season rice crop which begins in January-end.However, local sources say that the move by the government is to appease farmers ahead of general elections in April – May 2014. Moreover, there are concerns that rice prices may increase in the state if farmers sell their paddy rice in the neighboring state of Bihar, where the state government has announced a bonus of Rs. 250 per quintal (about $40 per ton).The West Bengal government usually procures levy rice from millers after March, but wants to complete levy rice procurement before March this year. Under the levy 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
  15. 15. policy, millers procure rice from farmers at MSP and government buys the rice from millers later for its welfare programs. Tags: India rice prices, minimum support price (MSP), India rice procurement Oryza White Rice Index Holds at $463 per Ton; Thailand Political Storm Continues Jan 24, 2014 The Oryza White Rice Index, a weighted average of global rice export quotes, finished the week at $463 per ton, unchanged from last week, down $1 per ton from last month and down $22 per ton from last year. The 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
  16. 16. index has been hovering above support at $450 for the last 4 months but has been unable to advance due to Vietnam, India, and Pakistan competing for business and keeping quotes soft. The USDA has increased its production forecast for 2013-14 global milled rice production. The new estimate is 471.1 million tons, about 500,000 tons higher than its December forecast. Thailand Thailand 5% broken rice quotes ended the week at $440 per ton, unchanged from the last week, but up about $15 per ton from a month ago and down about $115 per ton from a year ago. After months of criticism, Thailand’s National Rice Policy Committee has finally announced that it will not extend the government rice mortgage program, according to the Thai Public Broadcasting Service. The program will expire at the end of February and will not be renewed due to funding shortages. While this is largely welcomed news in Thailand, where public funds for the program are depleted many farmers haven’t received payments for their paddy in months, the global ramifications of this shift are unclear. With farmers looking to offload their paddy on the open market, Thai rice exports could bounce back, giving the rest of Asia a run for its money. The Thai government sold 148,940 tons of rice through the Agricultural Futures Exchange of Thailand (AFET) Wednesday, according to local sources. The Election Commission approved the Commerce Ministry’s request to continue to sell rice from state stockpiles through the AFET and the Commerce Ministry will now target to sell 200,000-400,000 tons in each auction and is seeking further approval from the Commission to proceed with the government-to-government deal with China. Farmers blocked the Indochina intersection in Phitsanulok’s Muang district on Thursday to protest the money the government owes them under the rice pledging scheme. They seek payment (plus interest) or their grains returned to them by the end of the month, threatening to join the People’s Democratic Reform Committee in Bangkok and have threatened to withdraw support for candidates in the current government coalition parties if their demands aren’t satisfied.In an effort to pay rice farmers some of the money they are owed, the government is seeking approval from the Council of State to borrow 130 billion baht (about $4 billion). The National Anti-Corruption Committee will not charge caretaker Prime Minster Yingluck Shinawatra until after the general election on February 2. Pending the results of a current investigation, she may face charges that she was negligent in her duties or even corruption charges. Amidst fears that political unrest will result in interest rate cuts, bond investors purchased 32.6 billion baht ($991 million) of three-year securities at 3.14% on January 17. The funds will be used to refinance Bank for Agriculture debts, not to directly fund the country’s rice mortgage scheme.Local sources say that if domestic unrest escalates the military is likely to step in, possibly reenacting the military coup in 2006. India India 5% broken rice is today quoted about $410 per ton, unchanged from a week ago, but down about $5 per ton from a month ago and down about $25 per ton from a year ago. Although there has been speculation by a government report in India that the country may have to begin importing rice by 2016-17, the latest data from 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
  17. 17. the USDA projects that India will once again be the world’s largest rice exporter in 2013-14, and India’s Central Rice Research Institute (CRRI) appears to agree. Production is expected to decline about 1% in 201314 and its total rice exports are expected to decline about 5%, but Indian rice exports are still expected to surpass Thai and Viet exports, thanks to firm demand for Indian basmati rice in the Middle East, the U.S. and Europe and the demand for non-basmati rice in Africa and Asia. This will be India’s third consecutive year as the top rice exporter since it lifted its ban on non-basmati rice exports in late 2011. The government of India estimates that it will need to procure about 61.4 million tons of food grains in order to effectively implement the recent Food Law. These 61.4 million tons represent an increase of about 20% from the five-year average and may translate to an additional 6-7 million tons of rice purchased by the government. Local sources are skeptical that the increased rice procurement will affect this year since most of the main crop has already been sold, but it may cause some increased purchases of future crops. India’s Finance Ministry has excluded milled rice from the “agricultural produce” category, making it eligible for a service tax of 12.36%. Unprocessed agricultural produce is excluded from the tax. With rice now subject to this tax, we expect prices in India to increase, although rice under the public distribution system (PDS) will remain unaffected since the Food Corporation of India (FCI) will absorb the additional costs. As of January 24, there are about 1.526 hectares of rice planted under India’s Rabi (winter) rice crop, an increase of about 42% from the same time last year, according to the Ministry of Agriculture.West Bengal, in eastern India, is seeking help from private rice millers to procure paddy from farmers and pay them. The government can delay payment to millers, something it cannot do with farmers; so the government is essentially taking credit from millers. The hope is that this early procurement on the private market by millers will strengthen prices and encourage farmers to reinvest in the boro season rice crop beginning at the end of January. However, farmers have been selling rice below the minimum support price (MSP). There is additional concern that farmers in West Bengal will sell their rice to the neighboring state of Bihar, where farmers are paid a bonus of about Rs. 250 per quintal (about $40 per ton). The outcome may be a shift of funding pressure from the government West Bengal to that of Bihar. Vietnam Vietnam 5% broken rice quotes today are shown about $405 per ton, unchanged from a week ago, but down about $10 per ton from a month ago and up about $20 per ton from a year ago.China’s Customs General Administration (CGA) says that China imported around 2.24 million tons of rice in the calendar year 2013, down about 5% from around 2.36 million tons in 2012, estimated by China National Grain and Oils Information Center (CNGOIC). According to the CGA, China also exported around 478,370 tons of rice in 2013. China’s rice imports declined in the second half of 2013. According to CGA data, China imported around 927,500 tons in July – December 2013, compared to around 1.31 million tons of rice in January – June 2013. China imported most of the rice from Vietnam in 2013 and Chinese importers cancelled several contracts in July - August, 2013, due to higher rice prices in Vietnam, according to rice traders in Vietnam. Vietnam is not alone in seeking rice business from China. On Wednesday, a senior agricultural official for 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
  18. 18. China announced that the country is striving for self-sufficiency in grain production. Pakistan After representatives from REAP visited China to promote Pakistan rice, exporters are hopeful that exports to China will increase to as much as one million tons in the financial year 2013-14. Pakistan exporters have already struck deals to about $4 million worth of exports, and they are looking to increase them by 19-70% in FY 2013-14. Pakistan exported 1.41 million tons of rice July-December 2013, an increase of 9% from the same period in the previous year, according to the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics.Pakistan 5% broken rice quotes ended the week at $395 per ton, down about $5 per ton from a week ago, and up about $10 per ton from a month ago and down about $35 per ton from a year ago. Brazil Brazil 5% broken rice ended the week at $665 per ton, unchanged from a week ago, but down about $20 per ton from a month ago. Conab announced that it sold about 66,362 tons of the 91,725 tons it offered in four different auction on January 22. About 22,8976 tons sold for an average price of 699 reals (about $297) per ton; about 2,000 tons sold for an average of about 680 reals (about $289) per ton; about 35,383 tons sold for an average of about 676 reals ($287) per ton; and about 6,082 tons sold for an average of about 631 reals (about $268) per ton. U.S. U.S. 4% broken rice quotes today shown about $590 per ton, unchanged from a week ago, but down about $5 per ton from a month ago and down about $22 per ton from a year ago.Chicago rough rice futures for March delivery dropped steadily this week, despite a few small recoveries. They ended the week at $15.425 per cwt (about $340 per ton). Rice farmers in Texas are still threatened by a drought. The Lower Colorado River Authority has cut off water to most farmers downstream for the previous two years and they are now facing a third year without water. The LCRA issued an emergency order to approve raising the “trigger” to 1.1 million acre feet, or 54% capacity of the total system. This “trigger” means that unless major lakes like Lake Travis and Lake Buchanan reach 54% capacity by March 1, rice farmers won’t get any water. Currently, Lake Travis and Lake Buchanan are at 38%. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) will consider LCRA’s request at its February 12 meeting, leaving rice farmers in limbo for a few more weeks. Other Markets: Cambodia 5% broken rice is today shown about $455 per ton, unchanged from a week ago, but down about $10 per ton from a month ago. Cambodia, who has been making a big push lately to increase their exports, is close to achieving its goal of one million tons of rice exported in 2015, according to the country’s Minister of Commerce. The country exported about 379,000 tons of rice in 2013, an increase of about 84% from 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
  19. 19. 2012. The Ministry of Agriculture reports that total production for 2013 reached 9.3 million tons.Uruguay and Argentina 5% broken rice is today quoted about $630 per ton unchanged from a week and month ago, but up about $20 per ton from a year ago.According to the Iraq grain board acting director general, the country imported 1.3 million tons of rice in 2013, about 90-95% of its annual rice consumption. Iraq issued a tender to purchase 15,000 tons of basmati rice from India. Applications are due February 3. The government of Ghana still refuses to lift its ban on rice import via borders as the Association of GhanaCote d’Ivoire Rice Importers and Sellers (GISA) once again implore the country to ease the prohibition, citing possible starvation in Ghana as people cannot purchase the more affordable rice from Cote d’Ivoire and government supplies may not reach the impoverished in time. Nigeria is striving to increase rice production for the 2014 dry season crop to about 1.6 million tons by helping farmers prepare for planting and improving market facilities for selling rice. This represents an increase of about 45% from the 1.1 million tons produced the previous year. Dry season crop usually accounts for about 40-45% of total rice production in the country and Nigeria is trying to achieve self-sufficiency in rice by 2015. The Philippines government will form an inter-agency team to help prevent rice smuggling into the country. The Bureau of Customs estimates that the country loses about P7 billion (about $154 million) annually due to rice smuggling and this new team with representatives from the Department of Justice, the Department of Agriculture, the National Food Authority, and the Bureau of Customs will help curb those losses. Farmer organizations in the Philippines have voiced concern over the quality of rice that was allegedly smuggled into the country, claiming that it was stored in unsanitary conditions. The Finance department in the Philippines revealed a list of the country’s top rice importers for 2013. Unsurprisingly, the National Food Authority (NFA) was number one, importing rice valued at a total of P4.356 billion (about $96 million). Because it’s a government entity, imports by the NFA are not taxed. Producers in Italy are suffering from lower prices and decreased acreage. They blame a lack of price support, environmental restrictions, and low trade barriers. As of January 21, 43% (about 616,000 tons) of Italy’s total paddy rice has been sold to millers.Bulog, the state-owned logistics board in Indonesia, will buy about 3.85 million tons of rice from Indonesian farmers in 2013-14, an increase of about 6% from the previous year. Bulog is trying to procure enough rice to increase its current stocks of about 2 million tons, which will last until September. Paddy rice production in Spain for 2013 declined to about 867,700 tons. This is a decrease of about 3.5% from the previous year, according to Eurostat, and is largely due to decreased yields. The Italian Government has confirmed its commitment in supporting the national rice growing sector in Europe: the goal is to cancel the possibility of unlimited zero-duty imports from Eba countries (Everything but Arms). President of parliamentary commission on agriculture, Roberto Formigoni, wrote on January 23 to head of Ente Risi Paolo Carrà, reiterating that it is the responsibility of the Ministry of Agriculture to promote European and national rice production. In the past two years European prices of Indica rice varieties have steadily declined and local sources blame 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
  20. 20. imports from Asia. A report issued on December 19 by Dg Agri, Management committee for the common organization of agriculture market, dealing with rice, confirms the alarm about imports from Eba countries: “55% of all Eba exports are potentially in competition with the local Indica rice production, which represents approximately one third of the total Eu rice production".According to European Union data, in 2012-2013 Eba countries exported to Europe 215,936 tons, and in 2013-2014, up to now, 84,942 tons, mostly milled and broken rice. In 2009-2010 the total amount was of 10,280 tons. In the 2013-2014 crop year imported milled rice has been acquired by France (24.6%) followed by Germany (24.2%), Belgium (18.9), the Netherlands (15.6%), Italy (6%), Spain (5.4%) and United Kingdom (5.2%). Tags: Oryza White Rice Index (WRI) BOC seizes 10,000 bags of rice By Gerry Lee Gorit (The Philippine Star) | Updated January 25, 2014 - 12:00am CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – Twenty-seven 20-foot shipping containers loaded with more than 10,000 bags of rice imported from Thailand were seized by the Bureau of Customs (BOC) in Northern Mindanao following the discovery of the misdeclared cargo.Acting Customs district collector Ruby Claudia Alameda issued the warrant of seizure and detention after a spot check revealed that each container was loaded with 520 bags of rice instead of the declared quantity of 400 rice bags.Alameda said the shipment came from Thailand and was consigned to the Malingas MultiPurpose Cooperative.The concessionaire had declared that the containers had 10,800 bags of Thai white rice.But after examination by BOC officials and a representative of the consignee, one container van was found to have an excess of 120 bags.Alameda said the 30 percent excess constitutes a violation of the Tariffs and Customs Code. She said the shipment arrived at the Mindanao Container Terminal Port in Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental last Dec. 20 on board the M/V Sandigan Voy.“Even though the shipment was covered by an NFA (National Food Authority) import permit we had the right to know what’s inside,” Alameda said.The seized shipment is now in a government-controlled warehouse pending resolution of the misdeclaration case.In a related development, Alameda issued a memorandum on Jan. 21 to all port collectors and exporters of mineral ore and lumber/logs to submit their Mineral Ore Permit or Export Authority to the office of the Customs District Collector for verification with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources before filing their Export Entry Declaration.“I will never be in cahoots with smugglers and I will never allow any illegal shipment to enter the port,” she added.Meanwhile, the cargo that contained 140,000 bags of Vietnamese rice for NFA Region 1 in a Vietnamese ship that ran aground last Dec. 27 near the pier in San Fernando City in La Union has not yet been unloaded. Carlito Co, NFA Region 1 director, said they have hired a barge to help in the operations to lighten the load of the Vietnamese ship M/V Vinh Hoa Po that was stuck about 1,200 meters from the pier. 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
  21. 21. Co said they have already unloaded about 33,000 bags of rice.He added that they are not yet sure when they could lighten the load to release the ship.Co said the NFA buffer stock for Region 1 was not affected by the delay of the rice shipment from Vietnam since the cargo is intended for the lean months of July to September.He added that another ship with 250,000 bags of rice for Region 1 had already docked at the San Fernando pier and is now unloading its cargo. Importers with no permits Some of the top rice importers in the country have been operating without the required importation permits even though the firms have been paying duties, according to the NFA.The Department of Finance and the BOC recently published in full-page advertisements the list of the top 40 rice importers for 2013 and the corresponding taxes they paid to the government for that year.NFA spokesman Rex Estoperez said payment of duties is not a guarantee that the rice importation is legal.Estoperez, however, declined to identify the companies importing rice without the proper permits.“The payment of duties is not a guarantee that rice shipments could enter the country,” he said. “No import permit means the shipment is illegal.”The NFA is mandated to issue an import permit to accredited importers. This is meant to regulate the volume of rice entering the country.Under the Philippines’ commitment to the World Trade Organization, the country allows the entry of 350,000 metric tons of rice under the minimum access value (MAV) at 40 percent duty, while imports outside of MAV are charged a 50 percent duty.Estoperez said that even for importation outside of MAV, the NFA determines the allowable volume of importation as it issues an import permit. – With Czeriza Velencia, Eva Visperas, Jun Elias Flood-tolerant rice shows improved yields in India Flickr / IRRI [NEW DELHI] A flood-tolerant hybrid rice that improves yields in India by almost half has been found to benefit marginalised people living in flood-prone areas.Researchers from the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) and the University of California, Berkeley, US, conducted randomised field trials in 128 villages in the eastern Indian state of Odisha, on SwarnaSub1 – a new variety that they developed by transferring a gene for flood tolerance, which allows plants to survive under submerged conditions, into Swarna, a rice variety commonly cultivated in India.The trials showed that yields of SwarnaSub1 could be 45 per cent higher, even when it was submerged under water for one to two weeks, compared to Swarna. 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
  22. 22. The results were reported in the journal Scientific Reports on 22 November 2013.The scientists used an advanced genetics technique called 'marker assisted selection' in which they select the precise gene of interest (in this case flood tolerance), by zeroing in on a marker linked to it, which could be a chemical molecule or a piece of genetic material.The report says that low-lying flood-prone areas tend to be more heavily occupied by people belonging to socially disadvantaged groups. So, apolicy-relevant implication of the findings is that "flood-tolerant rice can deliver both efficiency gains, through reduced yield variability and higher expected yield, and equity gains in disproportionately benefiting the most marginal group of farmers."Flash floods are common in 44 million hectares where rice is grown in India; and Swarna Sub-1 would prove beneficial if grown in 12-14 million hectares, or almost a third of the rice cultivated area, the report says. Although other flood-tolerant rice varieties were developed earlier,Swarna-Sub1 is the first to be released to farmers for cultivation, said Manzoor Dhar, lead author of the study and senior associate scientist at IRRI’s New Delhi unit.Since late 2009, the seed is being provided to randomly-selected farmers in Odisha's coastal districts, which are mainly rainfed lowlands and prone to floods. The variety has also been released in Bangladesh and Nepal, and in some South-East Asian countries.J K Roy, former joint director of India’s Central Rice Research Institute, in Cuttack in Odisha and currently nodal scientist with a non-government organisation AID which works with IRRI on flood-tolerant rice projects in Odisha, says that the success in Odisha's coastal districts is being replicated in some other districts in the state, and also in Bihar and Assam states. Link to paper in Scientific Reports For Advertising SPECS & RATES Contact: Advertising Department Mujahid Ali mujahid.riceplus@gmail.com +92 321 369 2874 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