Transporting rice for export (Source: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – Vietnam may export 6.5 million tonnes of rice in 2018, according to Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Ha Cong Tuan.

High-quality rice accounts for a large proportion of total rice export volume and normal rice makes up less than 20 percent, Tuan said.

Vietnam shipped 861,000 tonnes of rice abroad in the first two months of this year, earning 419 million USD, up 17 percent in volume and 34 percent in value compared with the same period last year.

The Philippines was the biggest importer of Vietnamese rice, accounting for 26.9 percent of the market share. It was followed by China, with 23.5 percent.

The export price for Vietnamese rise rose from 435 USD per tonne in 2016 to 450 USD per tonne in 2017 and 475 USD per tonne during January-February.

The increase was attributed to the country’s efforts to raise its rice quality.

Vietnam is doing well in increasing rice quality, Deputy Minister Tuan said, suggesting the country focus on improving the brand name of its rice.

Last year, Vietnam pocketed 2.6 billion USD from exporting 5.8 million tonnes of rice.-VNA