Ministries and related sectors should closely follow the development of rice markets at home and abroad and expand trade promotion activities for increasing Vietnamese rice exports, said a senior Government official.

Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai said that the Government Notice 239/TB-VPCP, issued on June 23, focuses on the rice export situation in the past and on solutions for increasing rice exports in the future.

According to Hai's directions, the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) would identify traditional rice export markets as the leading targets of export promotions and continue management of rice exports to markets having Government contracts, under the Prime Minister's directions in the official letter 1375/VPCP-KTTH, issued on March 4, 2014.

Hai said MoIT, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) and the Vietnam Food Association (VFA) will jointly follow the development of the world rice market and ensure balance between the domestic market's supply and demand for commercial rice and the real rice export situation in the world market. This would help the ministries and the related sectors to have effective solutions for increasing rice exports.

The MoIT and the VFA would report to the Prime Minister the rice export situation of Government contracts to have reasonable management of exports to the markets coming under these contracts, Hai said.

The ministry, the VFA and related sectors would enhance trade promotion activities for rice product exports to traditional and new markets, implement efficiently the memorandum of understanding (MoU) on commercial activities for rice and other farming products and promote the signing of MoUs on trading activities with countries which import large quantities of rice.

The trade offices of Vietnam abroad would support enterprises in rice export promotion activities, Hai said. Meanwhile, the MoIT would give priority to capital for rice export promotion activities under the national commercial promotion programme.

The MARD, MoIT and VFA will build Vietnam's plan on developing trademarks for rice exports and have policies encouraging trademarks for rice product exports.

The VFA must suitably adjust the floor price of rice exports as per the supply and demand in the domestic market and forecast rice exports to avoid any disadvantages for Vietnamese products, Hai said.

According to the association, Vietnam exported 351,650 tonnes of rice in the first 19 days of June, bringing the total volume of rice exports since early this year to 2.68 million tonnes, earning 1.16 billion USD.

In the first 19 days of June, Asia continued to be the largest export market for Vietnamese rice with an export volume of 267,500 tonnes, accounting for 76 percent of the total volume, followed by America with 61,318 tonnes.

Early this year, the association planned to export 6.5 million tonnes of rice in 2014 due to the high competitiveness in the world market.

Last year, Vietnam exported 6.7 million tonnes of rice, 11 percent lower than the initial export target, as the sector faced many difficulties.-VNA