Thailand & neighbors join together on rice

Thailand & neighbors join together on rice

Five leading Asean rice producing countries have a plan to cooperate on exports to boost rice prices by 10% every year.


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Economics
AGRICULTURE

Five ink deal to form rice cartel

Goal is to boost price by 10% annually
23/08/2012
Chatrudee Theparat & Phusadee Arunmas

Five Asean rice-producing countries are joining forces to form a regional alliance with the ambitious goal to boost rice prices by 10% annually.

Trade ministers from Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar and Laos are scheduled to sign the agreement later this year to establish the Asean Rice Federation, said Yanyong Phuangrach, the commerce permanent secretary

Mr Yanyong called the cooperation a first for a region that exports 20 million tonnes of rice a year.

The cooperation will help lift rice prices and [there is a consensus] among these members that rice is not only a staple but also a main source of revenue for them.

He said a 10% rise each year is acceptable and will not have significant effect on consumers.

"The cooperation can stabilise rice prices and ensure food security in the region," he told a press briefing yesterday.

But Korbsook Iamsuri, president of the Thai Rice Exporters Association, questioned the wisdom of raising prices by 10%, fearing a conflict of interest with Asean members such as Indonesia and the Philippines that are major customers.

In her view, the federation would be better off focusing on production standards and environmentally friendly cultivation.

After leading the world in rice exports for nearly 50 years, Thailand is expected to ship 6.5 million tonnes this year - just behind Vietnam, which will likely emerge as the No. 2 exporter behind India, according to US data.

Mr Yanyong said Cambodia, which produces 1 million tonnes of rice a year, wants to use Thailand's rice price as a benchmark in order to gain more income.

He predicts that after setting up the federation, export prices for premium white rice could rise to US$660 a tonne from $580-600.

Thailand will also plan to open free-trade zones along its borders by year-end to mill rice for neighbouring countries that lack the facilities to prepare and process rice for exports such as mills, silos and processing units.

Mr Yanyong said the Thai-Cambodian meeting covered discussion on the establishment of a Thai-Cambodian trading zone.

Thailand will also import Cambodian paddy to be milled for exports, which will increase the rice value.

"A similar project is planned for Myanmar border because the country grows even more rice than Cambodia," said Mr Yanyong.

He projected world rice prices would increase because of natural disasters in many countries.

The US Agriculture Department revised down its world rice production forecast to 463 million tonnes from 465 million tonnes due to natural disasters.

Consumption is expected to increase by one to 1.5 million tonnes, reaching 466-467 million tonnes.

(Source: Bangkok Post, Economics, AGRICULTURE, Five ink deal to form rice cartel, Goal is to boost price by 10% annually, 23/08/2012, Chatrudee Theparat & Phusadee Arunmas, link


Rice Industry Vocabulary

 
ink deal - sign a contract in a business deal

cartel - when two companies (or countries here) join together to control prices and keep them high (See Wikipedia)
rice cartel

five ink deal to form rice cartel

boost - to increase; to strengthen เพิ่ม; ทำให้มีกำลังมากขึ้น
boost price - increase price

annually - happening every year ทุกๆปีด

boost rice prices by 10% annually
Goal is to boost price by 10% annually

joining forces to
- cooperate on some project  

alliance - join together to help each other; a group of people, political parties, etc. who work together in order to achieve something that they all want พันธมิตร สหพันธ์

regional alliance
form a regional alliance

ambitious - goals are very high and difficult to achieve (perhaps even too high to be achieved) ทะเยอทยาน ความทะเยอทยาน
ambitious goal

scheduled - planned to happen at a particular time or day ตามตารางเวลา
scheduled to sign the agreement

establish - to start a company or organization that will likely continue for a long time สถาปนา, ก่อตั้ง, จัดตั้ง
establish the Asean Rice Federation

Five Asean rice-producing countries are joining forces to form a regional alliance with the ambitious goal to boost rice prices by 10% annually. Trade ministers from Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar and Laos are scheduled to sign the agreement later this year to establish the Asean Rice Federation, said Yanyong Phuangrach, the commerce permanent secretary

cooperation - working together to achieve shared goals ความร่วมมือกัน ความร่วมมือ, การทำงานร่วมกัน

Mr Yanyong called the cooperation a first for a region that exports 20 million tonnes of rice a year.

lift - increase
lift rice prices - increase prices

staple - an important product, especially a food, that people eat or use regularly อาหารหลัก, สินค้าหลัก
staple food

source - the place or person something comes from or starts at, or the cause of something ต้นกำเนิด, แหล่งกำเนิด
revenue - income from taxes or business activities รายได้
source of revenue

acceptable
a 10% rise each year is acceptable
Yanyong: 10% price rise acceptable

significant - important,  large enough to be important or have an effect ที่สำคัญยิ่ง
significant effect

consumers - people who buy things or services (individuals and families)
have significant effect on consumers

The cooperation will help lift rice prices and the census is agreed among these members that rice is not only a staple but also a main source of revenue for them. He said a 10% rise each year is acceptable and will not have significant effect on consumers.

stabilise - to reach a state where there are no longer any major changes or problems ทำให้มีเสถียรภาพ
stabilise rice prices

security - the activity of making safe or protecting from harm ความปลอดภัย

food security - when everyone in a country has enough food to eat: "a household's physical and economic access to sufficient, safe, and nutritious food that fulfills the dietary needs and food preferences of that household for living an active and healthy life" (See Wikipedia)

ensure
- to make certain that something happens or is done รับรอง ให้ความมั่นใจ ให้การยืนยัน รับรอง ย้ำ ให้ความมั่นใจ
ensure food security in the region

press
- the news media; newspapers and magazines, and those parts of television and radio which broadcast news, or reporters and photographers who work for them สื่อมวลชน
briefing - a short meeting to provide needed information to people การแถลงการณ์สั้นๆ สรุปแบบสั้นๆ

press briefing - a meeting to give information to the media and public 
a press briefing yesterday

"The cooperation can stabilise rice prices and ensure food security in the region," he told a press briefing yesterday.

wisdom - knowledge gained over a long period of time from experience
question the wisdom of ... - don't think it is a good idea ...
questioned the wisdom
of raising prices

conflict of interest - a situation in which there are two jobs or goals and it is not possible to treat both equally and fairly at the same time (examples: conflict of interest between business dealings and  political activities or when an auditor also supplies consulting services to the same corporate client) (See Wikipedia)

fearing a conflict of interest with customers

But Korbsook Iamsuri, president of the Thai Rice Exporters Association, questioned the wisdom of raising prices by 10%, fearing a conflict of interest with Asean members such as Indonesia and the Philippines that are major customers.

standards - a rule for behaving which should be obeyed มาตรฐาน, บรรทัดฐาน, กฎเกณฑ์, กรอบ
production standards

better off
- would be better in the future, if they did .... (this instead)
focus - put energy, thought and effort into one (instead of spreading it over many things)
better off focusing on production standards

cultivation
- growing plants
environmentally friendly cultivation


In her view, the federation would be better off focusing on production standards and environmentally friendly cultivation.

expected - believe will happen คาดว่า (จะเกิดขึ้น)
expected to ship 6.5 million tonnes this year

data - facts or information used for making calculations or decisions ข้อมูล
... according to US data.

After leading the world in rice exports for nearly 50 years, Thailand is expected to ship 6.5 million tonnes this year - just behind Vietnam, which will likely emerge as the No. 2 exporter behind India, according to US data.

benchmark - a standard for comparison (to measure or calculate others things by)
use Thailand's rice price as a benchmark

income - money that people receive from work or some other source, used for household consumption and savings
gain more income

Mr Yanyong said Cambodia, which produces 1 million tonnes of rice a year, wants to use Thailand's rice price as a benchmark in order to gain more income.

federation - a group of states or countries
setting up the federation

premium - special features or service that you pay extra for
premium white rice - high quality white rice

export prices for premium white rice

He predicts that after setting up the federation, export prices for premium white rice could rise to US$660 a tonne from $580-600.

border - the official line separating two areas, regions or countries เขตแดน อาณาเขต
along its borders

trade
- the buying and selling of goods การค้าขาย
free-trade zones - areas wear goods and services can be sold with tariffs, taxes and other barriers to trade
trading zone

open free-trade zones along its borders by year-end

facilities - a specially equipped place to do a certain activity (for example, athletics facilities) สิ่งอำนวยความสะดวก  สถานที่และสิ่งอำนวยความสะดวก
lack - does not have ขาดแคลน
lacks the facilities - does not have a place to do this activity (with the proper equipment)

mill rice for neighbouring countries that lack the facilities

process - a series of actions that you take in order to achieve a result แนวทางปฏิบัติ, กระบวน, วิธีการ
processing units - machines in a factory

mills - rice mills, factories for turning harvested rice into a product that can be sold in stores or stored for a time
silos - tall structures for storing large amounts of agricultural products (rice, grain) (See Wikipedia)

facilities
to prepare and process rice for exports such as mills, silos and processing units

meeting
- when a group of people come together to discuss issues and make decisions การประชุม

import - to buy or bring in products from another country นำเข้า
paddy - rice after it has been harvested from the field  ข้าวเปลือก
import Cambodian paddy

Thailand will also plan to open free-trade zones along its borders by year-end to mill rice for neighbouring countries that lack the facilities to prepare and process rice for exports such as mills, silos and processing units. Mr Yanyong said the Thai-Cambodian meeting covered discussion on the establishment of a Thai-Cambodian trading zone. Thailand will also import Cambodian paddy to be milled for exports, which will increase the rice value. "A similar project is planned for Myanmar border because the country grows even more rice than Cambodia," said Mr Yanyong.

projected - the amount that experts believe (forecast) for the future
projected world rice prices would increase

natural
- found in nature (not made in a factory by humans) ตามธรรมชาติ
natural disasters - bad events in nature like a tsunami, earthquake, big storm or flood that kill and hurt people and cause damage to property

He projected world rice prices would increase because of natural disasters in many countries.

forecast - a statement about what will happen in the future based on information available now พยากรณ์
revised - written again, changed and improved เปลี่ยนแปลง
revised down forecast

The US Agriculture Department revised down its world rice production forecast to 463 million tonnes from 465 million tonnes due to natural disasters. Consumption is expected to increase by one to 1.5 million tonnes, reaching 466-467 million tonnes.

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