Heavy rains and flooding since mid-July in Myanmar’s Sagaing Region have destroyed more than 24,000 hectares of paddy fields, however, the country’s exports may not get affected significantly, according to the General Secretary of Myanmar Rice Federation (MRF). It was informed that about 981 hectares of summer paddy fields, about 14,676 hectares of monsoon paddy fields and about 1,240 hectares of seedling fields have been affected by flooding as of July 19, 2015. However, overall yields are likely to suffer slightly but may not impact exports.
It has been emphasized that the government should support farmers as per new laws that have been framed to protect farmers. A prominent farmer from Sagaing Region told that farmers have an opportunity to replant until the beginning of September if they can re-spend on fertilizer and seeds.
The Vice Chairman of MRF stressed the government to encourage farmers to purchase crop insurance as most parts of Bago and Ayeyarwady regions are prone to flooding during this part of year. Further, MRF expects a paddy output of around 14 million tons in 2015 while government has been targeting to export around 2 million tons of rice this year.
It has been narrated that USDA estimates Myanmar to produce 20 million tons of paddy rice and export around 2 million tons of rice in MY 2015-16 (January – December 2015).