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Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Phl eyeing to import rice from Cambodia, India and Pakistan

MANILA, Philippines (Xinhua) - The Philippine government is keen on sourcing this year's rice imports from Cambodia, India and Pakistan, a senior agriculture official said today.

National Food Authority Administrator Angelito T. Banayo disclosed that he is set to meet with the ambassador of Cambodia on Wednesday for a possible rice supply deal.

"These are just initial discussions. We could buy from (these countries) if the price is right," Banayo said.

The Philippines has an existing rice supply agreement with Vietnam for a maximum of 1.5 million tons of rice. The memorandum of agreement, which was recently renewed by the government, is in force until 2013, when the Philippines expects to be self sufficient in rice.

Just recently, the NFA announced that it bought 200,000 tons of rice from Vietnam under a government to government deal.

For 2011, the Philippines had announced that it will buy 860, 000 tons of milled rice although the figure may go up if local rice production for January to June will not meet the projected production increase of 15.3 percent.

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