Deposed premier Thaksin Shinawatra says the rice pledging programme should be extended for several more years, rebuffing critics who say the policy has increased government debt and encouraged corruption.
Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra implemented the price-support policy to boost the incomes of farmers, whose support helped her Pheu Thai Party win elections last year. The government programme buys rice from farmers at above-market rates.
Thaksin said during an interview in Singapore yesterday that the policy reaps economic gains equal to three times the programme's cost.
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