|Sacks of rice are loaded onboard a ship at the Southern Food Company. The country exported 181,000 tonnes of rice in the first half of this month. — VNA/VNS Photo Dinh Hue
HA NOI (VNS) — The country exported 181,000 tonnes of rice in the first half of this month worth US$79.87 million, lifting the shipment to date this year to 1.932 million tonnes worth $845.38 million, according to data from the Viet Nam Food Association (VFA).
The association stated that the average price for export rice this month reached $441.51 per tonne, down roughly $21 per tonne against the same period last month.
However, domestic rice prices were reported to have edged up in the week through May 15, versus a week ago. In detail, in the Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta, the prices of dried rice with husk were from VND5,300 – 5,750 per kilogram depending on rice variety, up VND50-100 per kilogram. Prices of 5 per cent broken rice were from VND6,900 to 7,000 per kilogram, up VND100 per kilogram; prices of 15 per cent broken rice were from VND7,700 to 7,800 per kilogram, up VND50 per kilogram; and prices of 25 per cent broken rice were from VND7,400 to 7,500 per kilogram, up VND50 per kilogram.
The UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has estimated Viet Nam's milled rice exports to increase to about 7.2 million tonnes this year, up about 8 per cent from about 6.7 million tonnes last year due to higher production and increased export demand from Asian countries such as Indonesia, Malaysia, China and the Philippines backed by low prices.
FAO has estimated Viet Nam's total paddy rice production at about 44.2 million tonnes (around 27.6 million tonnes of milled rice) in 2014, marginally higher than about 44 million tonnes (around 27.5 million tonnes of milled rice) produced in 2013. The UN agency, however, forecasts Viet Nam's paddy rice production from 2014 winter/spring crop at 20.3 million tonnes, similar to last year's production, despite shifting part of the rice fields to other crops, due to higher yields, favourable weather conditions and adequate water supplies.
However, VFA last week lowered the country's 2014 rice export target to 6.2 million tonnes from the earlier target of 6.5 – 7 million tonnes due to heavy competition from India and Thailand. — VNS