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Why did rice exports drop sharply in the first month of the year?

According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, in January 2023, Vietnam's rice exports dropped sharply by 20.9% in volume and 17.4% in value over the same period, the export price was also lower than that of Thailand.

Accordingly, in the first month of 2023, Thailand's export rice prices hit the highest level in nearly two years thanks to the strong baht and strong purchasing power in the market. The price of Thailand's 5% broken standard rice as of the end of January 2023 was at 500 USD/ton, up $35 compared to 452 - 465 USD/ton at the beginning of the month. This is the highest level since March 2021. Meanwhile, the price of Vietnam's 5% broken rice exports ranges from 450 to 473 USD/ton.

Source: Cong Thuong

The reason for the decrease in rice prices is the decrease in world demand. Meanwhile, inventories in many countries are still high. A January report by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) also forecast that this year's rice demand will only reach about 54.4 million tons, down 4% from last year's record and falling for the first time since 2019.

In addition to objective reasons due to reduced market demand, many businesses are also facing financial difficulties, leading to not being able to buy rice at a good time. Market demand is still there, but businesses do not dare to sign because the price of rice is currently at a high level.

In the domestic market, rice prices in the Mekong Delta provinces increased in January 2023, with the increase depending on the demand for each type of rice.

Although the world situation is forecasted to be quite difficult, according to Vietnamese businesses, at the end of the first quarter, Vietnam's rice exports will prosper again when the market's supply is abundant. Meanwhile, Thailand - Vietnam's competitor - is under price pressure as the baht's rise reduces the profits of overseas distributors.

(Cong Thuong)


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