Rice sold in Bangkok, Thailand (Photo: AFP/VNA)

Bangkok (VNA) – The first rice auction of 2017 in Thailand has attracted 66 bidders bidding over 2.87 million tonnes of rice.

Forty-eight bidders were selected, with the highest price for 2.03 million tonnes of rice reaching 18.58 billion THB (530 million USD).

According to the Foreign Trade Department, Hom Mali rice, accounting for 26.1 percent of the total amount for auction or 745,236 tonnes, attracted the most interest from bidders.

Results of the auction will be submitted to the panel handling state rice stocks and the national rice policy committee for final approval.

In the end of January, Thailand shipped 100,000 tonnes of rice to China, the first batch of a 1-million-tonne contract between the two governments. Another 200,000 tonnes will be exported to China in February.

To date, Thailand has shipped overseas 1.6 million tonnes of rice for 28.6 billion THB (815.9 million USD), up 9.9 percent in quantity and 7.4 percent in value compared to the same period last year.-VNA