Rice sacks at  a Thai plant. Photo: AFP/VNA

Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on September 10 ordered a nationwide rice inventory compiled within 30 days.

Under the 2011-2014 subsidy scheme, 13.5 million tonnes of rice had been purchased and reserved across 1,800 warehouses across the country’s 51 provinces.

The new order means that local authorities need to present the exact quantity of good and decayed produce, helping set a more suitable price for rice biding.

Currently, 14 units won the bid to buy 246,793 tonnes of in-stock rice at 9,460 THB (266.5 USD) per tonne. According to Chookiat Ophaswongse, Honorary President of the Thai Rice Exporters Association, the rice sale allows the government to collect under 10 THB per kilogram while the production cost, excluding preservation fees, is estimated at 24 THB.

Despite Thai rice becoming less competitive in the global market, the weaker national currency helped rice export volume reach 6 million tonnes in the past eight months.-VNA