According to the sources, the Agriculture Minister in Thailand is likely to impose a ban on second crop planting in about 2.4 million hectares of rice land due to intensity of water shortages which is higher than expected. It was informed to the cabinet about his decision on September 15. Further, it was told that by the end of rainy season, on October 31, water levels in reservoirs would reach only 3.6 million cubic meters which is inadequate for farming activity. The Ministry is also likely to propose to set up a national committee to manage the situation.
Furthermore, the ban would force farmers from giving up rice growing during most of the 2015 crop year.
Thus under this ban, the total unplanted area, including the 139,200 hectares in the main crop season, would reach around 2.54 million hectares. It has been noted that some farmers had ignored government orders and carried out rice farming in the main crop season. However, the government is planning to instruct all the ministries to involve in the current situation and help farmers in raising their alternative income.
Under these conditions of ban order, farmers are disappointed with the government’s stance .In view of feedback and feelings of the farmers, it has been stated by the Chairman of the Central Agricultural Committee that the decision is a blow to the farmers who are already in debts.