In just a few days, Thailand will find itself in a stark competition with fellow Southasian countries Vietnam and Cambodia for the selling of more than 250.000 tonnes of rice to the Phillipines. Manila’s plan is to support global rice prices that have dropped in Asia and Africa in the past months, with benchmark prices in major suppliers Vietnam and Thailand at multi-month lows.
“We’re offering to sell one million tons but how much will be sold depends on the bids,” said Duangporn Rodphaya, chief of the commerce ministry’s foreign trade department in charge of the country’s rice auctions.
According to the official, the rice will be sold through two auctions, one which will involve more than 750.000 tonnes of rice dedicated to human consumption, and the rest up to a million tonnes is for rice fit for both human and industrial use. The government plans to sell the rice in two auctions on August 29 and 30, for domestic buyers only.
Duangporn also said that Thailand will certainly not sell rice for low prices to prevent any impact to the market.
It had been a bad year for rice-producing countries in Southeast Asia, and while the meteorological conditions had drastically cut the output to world markets, the same conditions now allow Thailand to speed up sales and gain a foothold before the main crop is harvested at the end of the calendaristic year.
According to Thai state officials, the Kingdom is ready to give Vietnam and Cambodia a run for their money when it comes to selling rice to the Phillipines, a country which is ready to hold an auction at the end of August in order to import 250.000 tonnes of rice based on a government-to-government contract.