Philippines will continue exporting premium quality rice to world market, government official says; exports have already reached 350 tonnes, more than its target of 100 tonnes for this year

December 2, 2013 () – The country will continue exporting premium quality rice to the world market, Agriculture Assistant Secretary and National Rice Program Coordinator Dante De Lima told a press conference held at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) Friday.

Rice exports have already reached 350 metric tons (MT), which is thrice more than its target of 100 MT for this year. Premium rice is very much in demand abroad, De Lima said.

He also said that farmers are now starting to plant black, brown and red rice because they are assured of a higher income.

The Agriculture department will continue on assisting rice exporters to gain access to the international market. However, it will calibrate its policy to ensure that the country will be able to attain its goal towards rice self-sufficiency and balance of trade.

The Philippines had its first export shipment of brown rice with a total volume of 45 MT to Singapore last July to answer the needs of 146,000 Filipinos that are staying in that country.

This was followed by shipments of 35 MT to Dubai, 15 MT to Kuwait and Hong Kong, and 11.5 MT to Germany, Macau, Canada and the Netherlands.

The rest of the exports went to the United States and other countries. These represented the first rice shipments to other countries in 40 years. - PNA

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