Myanmar Rice Federation is planning to spend K14.5 billion (about US$17.2 million) to buy buffer stock from the November crop, starting from November 20.
The federation will accept only 25 percent broken rice, said Dr Soe Tun, central executive member of MRF on November 8.
“We will ask farmers to make bids because we could not collect the buffer stock for last year. We have no milling machines. That’s why there were problems with the quality and quantity of rice after milling. For this year’s crop, we will accept only 25pc broken rice and will only consider applicants who make bids,” he said.
MRF will invite bids in private sector and state-owned media this month, he said.
“The funding for the buffer stock comprises K10 billion from the government, K1 billion from cooperative departments, and K3.5 billion from MRF,” he added.
He said restrictions would apply, and that each bidder might be allowed to sell a maximum of 1000 tonnes, but the amount had not yet been decided.
“We will buy directly from the farmers because some people can’t send stock to our warehouses because of transportation difficulties. Some people are still trying to send their deliveries from the last crop, so we will buy only in Yangon this year,” he said.
In the recent monsoon season, the major rice production areas of Yangon, Bago and Ayeyarwady regions were flooded for several days. As a result, some fields were destroyed and in others replanting was delayed.
“There was some impact on rice production because of abnormal weather. But the amount of rice will not decrease significantly, and the price will not increase,” said Dr Soe Tun.
Total rice production annually amounts to more than 12 million tonnes. More than 10 million tonnes are used domestically, and less than a million tonnes are exported.
MRF plans to export about 50,000 tonnes (25pc broken rice) to Africa in late November, of which more than 10,000 tonnes is left over from last year’s buffer stock.
The remaining 40,000 tonnes is from Myanmar Agricultural Public Corporation.