RICE: WORLD MARKETS AND TRADE
Burma Rice Exports Plummet: Despite rising stocks and relatively low domestic prices, Burma's exports are expected to shrink to a mere 100,000 tons as the government-imposed export ban is now expected to extend until at least March 2005.
China Update: Despite a reduction in the 2003/04 production estimate, imports are revised down 300,000 tons to 1.0 million. This reflects both cancelled sales and import pace through April. It seems that the release of government-held stocks, which amounted to almost 2 million tons January through April, achieved the government's goal of stabilizing domestic prices, thereby decreasing the immediate need for imports. The government has also implemented longer-term strategies for increasing grain production. For example, it will provide a direct subsidy to grain farmers and, in Jilin and Heilongjiang provinces, the farmers are currently exempt from paying the agriculture tax. Meanwhile, 2004/05 production is forecast up year-to-year, but was revised down slightly month-to-month.
International: World prices have eased over the last month as China retreated from the market and cancelled contracts. Thai 100B is currently quoted at $235 per ton, FOB, and has been hovering around this level for the last 4 weeks, down $10 from last month. Prices in Vietnam have also weakened, with 5% quoted at $231 per ton, FOB, down $8 since last month. With hopes fading for significant exports and subsidies, quotes for Indian 5% are down $15 to $255 per ton, FOB.
Domestic: U.S. #2/4 long grain milled rice is currently quoted at $428 per ton, FOB, thereby widening the spread between U.S. and Thai prices to $193 per ton. Price quotes for U.S. #1/4 medium grain milled rice from California are quoted at $440 per ton, bulk, ex-spout Sacramento.
TRADE CHANGES IN 2005
TRADE CHANGES IN 2004
Note: The EU-25 export and import numbers have been revised based on a recent assessment of intra-trade.
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