Once again the government's flagship rice-pledging scheme has returned with a vengeance to the front pages and public debate, as the cabinet approved a budget of 405 billion baht to extend the programme into its second year, until September 2013. Conditions remain essentially unchanged.
One of many rice mills in Ayutthaya which has joined the government’s rice pledging scheme. But investors rather than producers look to be the beneficiaries of the programme.
Thus far, Thailand has already spent 260 billion baht on subsidising rice prices. About 26 million tonnes of paddy is expected to enter the new pledging round.