Myanmar exported 150,000 tons of rice in the first three quarters (April-December) of the fiscal year 2008-09 amid storm, the local weekly 7-Day News reported Thursday.
Of the rice export, 101,235 tons were shipped to South Africa, 11,908 tons to Singapore, 8,007.85 tons to Sri Lanka, 2,499.7 tons to the United Arab Emirate, 1,500 tons to South Korea and 1,197.7 tons to Egypt, the state-run Myanmar Agricultural Produces Trading was quoted as saying.
Meanwhile, Myanmar granted free export of rice by trading companies last October and since then a total of 35,755 tons have so far been shipped by 19 companies, of which 3,055 tons were exported by 9 companies through border points, the report added.
According to the figures of the Central Statistical Organization, in 2007-08, Myanmar exported 358,500 tons of rice, gaining 100 million U.S. dollars.
Myanmr government has urged agricultural entrepreneurs to make greater efforts for exporting more rice, saying that the country has enough cultivable land to boost paddy production.
Out of 17.6 million hectares of cultivable land, only 11.6 million hectares of paddy or 65.9 percent could be grown, the authorities said.
The year 2007 saw a production of 30 million tons of paddy out of 7.6 million hectares grown, but only about 20,000 tons of rice were exported.