Myanmar exports rice to over 50 countries and more than 70 per cent of exported rice goes to China, according to the Ministry of Commerce.
Traders export rice to China via both border routes and shipping lanes but use the former more.
Between April 2016 and January 2017, the country exported 1.15 million tonnes of rice and broken rice and earned more than US$ 370 million. But that amount is less than that of the same period last year by about 150,000 tonnes. In 2015-16, the country exported 1.5 million tonnes of rice.
The ministry is hopeful that it will meet last year’s record since it has received offers for government-to-government rice-trade deals.
Assistant permanent secretary Khin Maung Lwin at the ministry said: “Foreign countries have offered to buy rice under a government-to-government deal. Sri Lanka now wants to import Myanmar’s rice.”
Five companies have won contracts for the export of 50,000 tonnes of rice to Sri Lanka by June, according to the Myanmar Rice Federation.
Chinese authorities have confiscated the rice imported from Myanmar at the border as smuggled goods due to restrictions on imports, and the Muse border trade halted temporarily due to armed conflicts between government forces and armed rebels in November reducing total export.