Thailand’s military government has paid rice farmers 2.86 billion USD in arrears, to end obligations created by the previous cabinet and its enormous expenditure on the controversial scheme.

The news was recently declared by Executive Vice President of the Bank of Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives (BAAC), Supat Eauchai.

The farmers were left unpaid for months after the then-Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra dissolved the parliament last December, turning her Government into a caretaker one that had no power to borrow money to pay off its debts.

Thailand’s military leader, Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha, said the ruling military council has no immediate plans to maintain the rice-buying scheme launched by the ousted Yingluck.

The scheme was one of the major policies that brought Yingluck to power in 2011, thanks to a promise to pay farmers grain prices way above market rates.

However, the scheme has led to huge losses, as the Government was forced to sell rice from the state stockpiles at market prices that were more than 50 percent less than the price of 463 USD per tonne it had paid farmers.-VNA