Over 100 farmers staged a protest in Pyay Township, western Bago Region on the morning of June 10, calling on the government to control a sharp decline in rice prices.
Htay Naing, a farmer from Paukkhaung Township said: “I participated in the protest as the current buying price of rice is at Ks400,000 per basket. Farmers face a loss of nearly 100,000 Kyats per acre. The input costs are extremely high. Farmers face additional losses as they have to buy inputs taking loans. Farmers are not in a position to repay the government’s agricultural loans as the paddy prices are extremely low. Farmers take to the streets to reveal our plights.”
Aye Aye Khaing, a farmer from Pyay Township said: “Farmers are facing a lot of difficulties as the rice prices are declining. Farmers have to pay around Ks 70,000 per acre as the paddy price is about Ks 4,000 per basket. I would like to urge the government to buy the rice at a price of around Ks5000 per basket. We make a demand for all farmers nationwide.”
Due to some restrictions of summer paddy exports by China, the biggest rice buyer, the floor rice price is around Ks 410,000 per 100 baskets.
On May 24, farmers from Zeegone and Gyobinkauk Townships in Bago Region, farmers staged similar protests, calling on the government and the MRF to buy rice at a floor price of Ks500,000 per 100 baskets.