Farmers harvest the 2021-22 winter – spring rice crop in Tien Giang Province’s Cai Lay District. — VNA/VNS Photo Minh Tri

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh requested relevant ministries and sectors to grasp the situation and have appropriate solutions to stabilise the market and rice prices, and ensure the interests of farmers after information that India will restrict rice exports.

The Government Office has just issued Document No 6263/VPCP-KTTH, conveying the opinion of Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh about India's restriction on rice exports and its impact on Vietnamese rice production and export.

Accordingly, India issued an export ban on broken rice effective from September 15; imposed an export tax of 20 per cent on white and brown rice products, accounting for 60 per cent of India's total rice exports, as the Government of India is increasingly concerned about declining supply and food price inflation.

The Vietnamese Prime Minister requested the Ministries of Agriculture and Rural Development, Industry and Trade, and Finance to actively monitor and closely follow the situation to implement appropriate and timely measures and solutions according to their competence and legal regulations, ensure food security, efficiency in rice export management, stabilise rice market prices and farmers' benefits; promptly report to the Prime Minister issues beyond the competence of the ministries.

India's restriction on rice exports is said to have an impact on the volume and price of Vietnamese rice exports. The domestic price of rice has increased significantly over the past week.

However, during a conference co-hosted by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the People’s Committee of the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho late last week, Chairman of the Vietnam Food Association Nguyen Ngoc Nam still forecast that Viet Nam’s rice export was likely to surpass the target set for this year.

Nam said Viet Nam earned nearly US$2.4 billion from exporting 4.97 million tonnes of rice in the first eight months of this year, up 20.7 per cent in volume and nearly 9.9 per cent in value from the same period last year.

Viet Nam plans to ship 6.3-6.5 million tonnes of rice this year, or 100,000–200,000 tonnes more than 2021.

Asia is the biggest buyer of Vietnamese rice, accounting for more than 50 per cent, followed by Africa and America.

The Philippines alone bought over $1 billion worth of Vietnamese rice, or nearly half of Viet Nam's total export, mostly jasmine and hi-quality rice, up more than 47 per cent year on year.

In the past eight months, China bought over 520,000 tonnes of rice from Viet Nam, or about 10 per cent of Viet Nam's rice exports, down 29 per cent annually. At present, the neighbouring country has huge demand for glutinous rice but supplies in Viet Nam are insufficient.

Ghana and the Ivory Coast remained stable markets for Viet Nam, with more than 18 per cent of the total rice export. — VNS