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Corn Exports Talks with Thailand in the Works


Myo Sandar/Myanmar Business Today

Traders from Myanmar and Thailand are planning talks on corn exports following offers from the Thai side to buy up to 1 million tons of corn per year. The two sides hope to sign an agreement in early 2020.

Last year, Myanmar exported 700,000 tons of corn to Thailand.

“We will hold talks with Thailand in Naypyidaw on November 30 to sign MoU,” said U Khin Maung Lwing, Deputy Permanent Secretary for Commerce. “We used to export corn only to China. Now, there is corn demand from Thailand big enough to buy all of our corn supply.”

During the 2019 fiscal year, China halted corn imports from Myanmar, forcing the country to start looking for other markets. Subsequently, it started exporting corn to Thailand.

Myanmar earned $270 million from exporting 1.5 million tons of corn during fiscal year 2019, with 1.3 million tons going through border trade routes, according to data from the Ministry of Commerce.

There are 1.9 million acres of corn cultivation area in Shan State, Sagaing Region, Magway Region, Chin State, Karen State and Kayah State.

Myanmar’s corn exports totaled 1.3 million tons in the 2015 fiscal year, 1 million tons in 2016, 1.2 million tons in 2017 and 1.2 million tons in the 2018 fiscal year. The government and traders hope to see bigger corn production and exports in the future.