Paddy farmers risk losses as prices fall

Paddy prices in the capital are falling on weak demand and the drop risks damaging the market, farmers and traders said. The market price for 100 baskets of stored manaw thukha paddy in Nay Pyi Taw was almost K850,000 in September, but has since fallen to around K600,000, U Nay Soe, a rice seller in Pyinmana township, told The Myanmar Times. Rice merchants in Myanmar’s capital facing lower prices for stored paddy are in turn lowering the price at which they are buying newly harvested paddy from farmers. The price for 100 baskets of monsoon paddy harvested this month is only K400,000, say farmers – much less than last year. Nay Pyi Taw farmers hoping to sell fresh paddy are worried because when the price of 100 baskets falls much below K500,000 they risk losses. But demand from China, the main destination for most of Myanmar’s milled rice exports, has crumbled recently. Senior figures in the Myanmar rice industry say the drop is down to China’s attempt to clamp down on illegal cross-border trade.

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