Thailand Rice Exports & Domestic Prices Fueled by Iraq


Aug 11, 2022 | Agricultural Markets News

Reading time: 1 minute

Thailand’s Rice exports in the H1 of this year surged 57% to 3.5 million tons, bringing in 61 billion baht revenue, up 43% year-on-year. According to the Thailand Rice Exporters Association and Customs Department’s data, Thailand exported 764,100 tons of Rice worth 13 billion baht in June alone, up 70% and 57%, respectively, compared to 451,000 tons worth 8.4 billion in May. The export of steamed and jasmine Rice in June totaled 140,200 tons and 103,900 tons, up 11% and 15% month-on-month, respectively. 

As per Thai Customs Data, Iraq, the United States, South Africa, China, and Japan were the top 5 export destinations in terms of shipment volume at market shares of 19%, 11%, 9%, 9%, and 4%, respectively, in the H1. For the sales value, the United States led the market with a share of 17% (10.5 million baht), followed by Iraq (15%), China (8%), South Africa (7%), and Japan (3%).   

AgFlow data also shows that Iraq led their export market in June-August with 335,000 tons of Rice, followed by South Africa, Senegal, Cameroon, and Benin. In terms of types, white Rice led the export market in the H1, with 1.7 million tons in volume and 25.4 million baht in value, followed by Thai Hom Mali (0.7 million tons worth 19.5 million baht) and Broken Rice (0.4 million tons worth 5.3 million baht).

Rice Export Markets by tons

Agriculture and Cooperatives Minister Chalermchai Sree-on said: We should be able to export at least 7-7.5 million tons of Rice this year. This export capacity will make us the world’s second-largest Rice exporter than Vietnam.

Thailand has approximately 10 million hectares of Rice plantations and 3.7 million farmer households. For the 2021/2022 harvest season, the Association expects Thailand’s Rice production to increase to 30-32 million tons of paddy Rice, or 20 million of milled Rice, up from 27-28 million tons of paddy Rice and 17 million tons of milled Rice in the 2020/2021 season.

Price competition

The rise in domestic Rice prices (25%) has outpaced that of export prices, as free-on-board prices of white Rice have increased by 15% from USD400 per ton to USD460 per ton. The surging local price has been driven chiefly by massive demand from Iraq, which started repurchasing Thailand Rice after halting its imports for many years. As of June 01, the price of white Rice in 5% of Thailand was USD465 per ton.

Meanwhile, the price of white Rice 5% in Vietnam, India, and Pakistan was at 423-427, 338-342, and 373-377 USD/ton, respectively. Thai Parboiled Rice price was 480 USD/ton while Indian parboiled Rice and Pakistan’s were 348-352 and USD392-396 per ton, respectively. So, growing and fluctuating Thailand price challenges traders’ ambition to become the second largest exporter. 

White Rice is mainly shipped to Iraq, Japan, Mozambique, Malaysia, Angola, etc. In contrast, parboiled Rice is shipped to African and Middle Eastern countries such as South Africa, Yemen, Niger, etc. Jasmine Rice (early Rice) exports gradually increase to the Middle East, whereas traditional markets such as the United States, Hong Kong, Canada, and Singapore continue to import.   

According to the Thailand Rice Exporters Association, Thai Hom Mali Rice – Premium (the crop year 2020/21) and Thai Hom Mali Rice – Premium (the crop year 2021/22) are valued each at the export price of $886 per ton as of August 03. Next, highly valued Rice varieties were White glutinous Rice 10% – Major crop (USD623) and Thai Jasmine (Fragrant) Rice (USD602), followed by White Rice 100% – Grade B (USD435), Parboiled Rice 100% – Premium (USD432), White Rice 5% (USD421), White Rice 25% (USD415), and White Broken Rice A.1 Super (USD393).



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