South Korean government to buy 200,000 tons of rice to stabilize prices

Publish December 28, 2021

Seoul, Dec. 28 (BNA): South Korean government will buy 200,000 tons of locally produced rice this year to help stabilize the market price of the staple grain, the ruling party said Tuesday following a meeting with agriculture authorities.

'Of the surplus amount of 270,000 tons of rice, the government will isolate 200,000 tons from the market in the near future,' said Rep. Park Wan-joo, the chief policy maker of the ruling Democratic Party (DP).

'The government will announce a detailed plan for the purchase of 200,000 tons in January following discussions with related parties.'

Park added the government will monitor market situations and rice reserves to determine whether and when it should buy the remaining surplus amount of 70,000 tons of rice, South Korean News Agency (Yonhap) reported.

The move comes after this year's rice production reached 3.88 million tons, up 10.7 percent from a year earlier, and outmatched expected demand of 3.61 million tons, which resulted in a surplus of 270,000 tons.

Due to the oversupply, rice prices have dropped nearly 10 percent since early October and dragged down the income of farmers.

Under the grain management law, the government can 'isolate' rice from the market if its harvested amount is 3 percent larger than the expected demand or its prices have dropped 5 percent or more from last year.


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