June 26, 2023
BANGKOK – The Department of Foreign Trade is taking the lead to expand sales of Thai jasmine rice in China and Hong Kong SAR, according to its director general Ronnarong Phoolpipat.
Talks are being held to address trade obstacles in the two markets, Ronnarong said.
Exports of Thai jasmine rice will surpass 8 million tonnes this year, he forecast.
Thailand exports 600,000 to 700,000 tonnes of rice to China each year, mainly white and Thai jasmine rice.
Hong Kong imports even more. Exports of Thai rice to the special administrative region average 1.7 million to 1.8 million tonnes a year, of which 70-80% is Thai jasmine rice.
Hong Kong is among the top three importers of Thai jasmine rice and Thai rice has a 60% share of Hong Kong’s rice market, Ronnarong said.
The Department of Foreign Trade is accelerating efforts to strengthen trade relations, build confidence, and expand markets for Thai jasmine rice and cassava.
Thai rice exporters are in talks with the Department of Commerce and Industry of Hong Kong, covering topics such as inventory control, product origin, trade regulations, and export licenses.
Additionally, measures have been taken to implement and enforce free trade agreements.
Hong Kong’s Department of Commerce and Industry expressed appreciation to the Thai government for its support and cooperation in joining the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, which promotes and expands trade between Hong Kong and member countries.
Hong Kong, as a tax-free city, serves as a gateway for distributing goods throughout China.
Moreover, meetings have been held with Chinese government agencies and private entities in Beijing, following the discovery of a case involving a factory in China falsely claiming Thai jasmine rice as its own and selling it in the Chinese market.
Chinese authorities promptly closed the factory and initiated legal proceedings. Both parties agree on the necessity of immediate action against counterfeit products, false claims of Thai jasmine rice, and the falsification of marks and certifications.
Furthermore, the Department of Foreign Trade has planned to send representatives from both the public and private sectors to meet and strengthen trade relations with key partners in other countries. In July, representatives will visit the Philippines, while visits to Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, and Japan are scheduled for August.