Philippines may need to import more rice than initially forecast after typhoon damages crops in central region, senior economist says

HANOI, Vietnam , November 12, 2013 () – A senior economist at the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) has said that the Philippines may need to import more rice than initially forecast after super typhoon Haiyan damaged crops in Central Philippines.

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) earlier estimated the Philippines will buy 1.1 million metric tonnes of grain this year, lower than last year's 1.4 million metric tonnes.

Samarendu Mohanty was quoted by news agencies on November 11 as saying that the Philippines may not have enough inventory to handle rice shortages caused by the typhoon. Rice imports may increase, pushing purchases above an estimate of 1.1 million metric tonnes by the USDA.

According to preliminary data from the Department of Agriculture, typhoon Haiyan claimed a total of 138.6 million peso worth of crops being grown in the Bicol and Mimaropa regions.

As of November 9, typhoon Haiyan wasted a total of 9,857 metric tonnes of rice, corn and high-value crops in some 5,500 hectares of farmland./.

(c) 2013 Viet Nam News, Vietnam News Agency

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