Author Topic: Low prices for rice: Chaiyaphum farmers block highway  (Read 798 times)

Offline Johnnie F.

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Low prices for rice: Chaiyaphum farmers block highway
« on: March 03, 2010, 08:41:27 PM »
Chaiyaphum farmers block highway

At least 1,000 farmers from three districts of Chaiyaphum province on Wednesday blocked the Chaiyaphum-Si Kiew highway in front of Ban Khai fresh market in Muang district, calling for the government to help resolve the problem of falling rice prices, reports said.

The farmers said prices of unmilled rice had fallen to only 6,000 to 7,000 baht a tonne. In addition, rice millers had  refused to buy their harvested grain.

They called on the ministries of commerce and agriculture and cooperatives to help get the millers to buy their paddy at the minimum price of 10,000 to 12,000 baht a tonne.

The protesters set up tents on the highway causing severe traffic congestion.

Police advised travellers to use other roads.

Deputy Prime Minister overseeing economic matters Trairong Suwankiri said earlier this morning that he will propose to the prime minister that a meeting of National Rice Policy Committee be called to discuss ways to settle the problem of low prices for rice.

However, Mr Trairong insisted that the government will not reinstate the rice mortgage scheme, which ended last year, as called for by farmers from the central provinces.

The central farmers claimed that the current guaranteed price scheme is not working.

“The rice mortgage scheme will not be reinstated as it has loopholes for corruption. The government will instead improve its guaranteed price scheme to ensure it really works,” he said.

Bangkok Post