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Export Rice Prices Steady in India Despite Volatile Rupee, Bangladesh Mulls Another Import Duty Cut

5 Mar 2021 7:15 am
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Mumbai (Commodities Control) – Rice export rates held steady in most Asian hubs this week as news supply from fresh harvests trickled in, while Bangladesh mulled another cut to import duties to bolster dwindling domestic reserves.

Prices for India's 5 percent broken parboiled variety were steady at $393-$399 per tonne amid rising supplies from the new season crop.

"Rupee has been quite volatile in the last few days. We are keeping prices steady, but we have to raise if the rupee appreciates further," said an exporter based at Kakinada in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh.

Shipments from India have gained momentum as the state of Andhra Pradesh has started using a deepwater port to export rice for the first time in decades.

Thailand's benchmark 5% broken rice prices widened slightly to $515-$560 per tonne, from $520-$560 last week.

Muted demand, optimism over a new off-season harvest and the weakening of the baht against the U.S. dollar, have pressured prices, Bangkok-based traders said.

Vietnam's 5% broken rice rates were unchanged from last week at $505-$510 per tonne.

Meanwhile, domestic rice prices are edging down on rising supplies from the main harvest in the Mekong Delta, traders said.

Vietnam's rice shipments in the January-February period are forecast to drop 31.4% from a year earlier to 638,000 tonnes.

Bangladesh is considering further slashing duty on rice imports in an effort to bolster reserves and cool record local prices, a food ministry official said.This would follow a cut to 25% from 62.5% in late December.

Bangladesh, traditionally the world's third-biggest rice producer, has emerged as a big importer lately due to depleted stocks and record prices after repeated flooding ravaged its crop.

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