Yangon looks to cut rice production

Military-appointed First Vice President Myint Swe meets business leaders in Yangon.

The Yangon regional government is holding discussions with the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation about growing other crops in 1.2 million acres of paddy fields, said the region’s Chief Minister Phyo Min Thein on September 23.

“We are drafting a master plan for the agricultural sector. Yangon is a gateway that can export products to international markets. I think the move may have no huge impact on the agricultural sector,” he added.

The plan faces some difficulties due to the Farmland Law and other legislation protecting farmers’ rights and economic welfare.

“The Farmland Law says farmers should grow rice independently. The government spent about Ks7 billion mechanising more than 4,000 acres of farmland this year,” the chief minister continued.

Myanmar puts more than 15 million acres of land under monsoon paddy every year. By growing other crops in 1.2 million acres of paddy field, rice production will decline by more than 1 million tonnes. During the first five months of this fiscal year, Myanmar exported more than 1 million tonnes of rice with exports due to exceed 2 million by next April, according to the Myanmar Rice Federation.

Source: Eleven Myanmar