As quoted by the National Food Authority (NFA) Administrator, the government of Philippines will decide on importing additional one million tons of rice in the first quarter of 2016 by the end of October 2015. Further, the NFA Council will meet end-October to discuss rice import plan and it may purchase rice through government-to-government (G2G) transaction or through private sector. It was also narrated that the Philippines has already secured 500,000 tons of rice imports for delivery in the first quarter of 2016.
Furthermore, in this regard, the government is expecting this year’s paddy output to decline by about 25% due to the El Nino induced drought conditions. The effects of the El Nino are expected to last till the middle of 2016. So, the Government is considering the phenomenon to be as intense as that in 1997-98, when the farm output fell by 23% while prices increased significantly. It has approved for importing about 1.8 million tons rice for delivery this year. As per data, it has been indicated that as on October 13, about 937,000 tons of rice has been received and about 600,000 tons were purchased by the private traders under the WTO rules.