Final lot of inedible stock for sale
The government is calling an auction for the final lot of inedible-grade rice stocks totalling 2 million tonnes, with stringent control measures vowed to prevent any abuses.
Adul Chotinisakorn, director-general of the Foreign Trade Department, said as chairman of a panel handling the government's rice sales, responsible authorities would unveil the terms of reference (ToR) for 2 million tonnes of inedible-grade rice on June 4.
The lot comprises 1.5 million tonnes of rice fit for animal feed production, and 500,000 tonnes inedible both for humans and animals, suitable only for fuel or energy production.
Interested bidders will be allowed to hear the ToR and file their bids on June 14-15. The winning bidders are scheduled to be announced by the end of June.
Mr Adul said to prevent any abuses and misuse, the winning bidders are required to sign contracts with the Public Warehouse Organization (PWO) or Marketing Organization for Farmers. Transport will be closely monitored by an ad hoc inspection committee and the provincial working committee.
The government has pledged to take legal action if the winners try to sell the rice for human consumption.
Earlier this month, the government called an auction for the final lot of edible-grade rice stocks totalling 43,700 tonnes after postponing it for almost a year. Participating bidders were allowed to examine the quality of the grains now being kept at 20 state warehouses in 15 provinces under the auspices of the state-run PWO from May 8-15.
Bidders are scheduled to submit qualifications by May 15 and file their bids on May 18.
Under the ToR, bidders have to buy rice on a wholesale basis. The stocks include 24,000 tonnes of 5% white rice, 7,000 tonnes of 100% hom mali and 6,000 tonnes of provincial fragrant rice. The rest comprises glutinous rice, broken white rice and broken hom mali rice.
Mr Adul said overall rice prices are increasing as global demand remains strong.
Thai hom mali prices are quoted at an average of $1,161 a tonne, up from $1,150 last week, with the prices of 5% white rice averaging $450 a tonne, down from $456 a week before.