HANOI, July 18 (Xinhua) -- Vietnam is facing difficulties in fulfilling target of rice exports this year, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development said on Monday.
In the first half of 2016, Vietnam shipped some 2.69 million tons of rice to the world market, earning 1.21 million U.S. dollars, down 9.8 percent in volume and 5.9 percent in value year-on-year.
Price of Vietnamese 5-percent broken rice from summer-autumn crop during the previous week fell to 360-365 U.S. dollars per ton from 360-370 U.S. dollars per ton a week earlier, Vietnam's state-run news agency quoted the ministry as saying.
The decrease in price of Vietnamese rice was attributed to the shortage of new orders as Thailand is clearing its huge stockpile, accroding to the ministry.
The gloomy situation of rice exports since the second quarter of 2016 has prompted the Vietnam Food Association (VFA) to lower rice export target to 5.65 million tons this year.
The figure decreased from the previous target of 6.5 million tons. As such, this will be the first time in many years that Vietnam saw an under-6-million-ton rice export volume, said the ministry.
The ministry also said there is currently no sign of new contracts from rice importers.
In late April, the Thai government announced a plan to sell over 11 million tons of rice in government stockpiles.
In 2015, Vietnam exported some 6.6 million tons of rice, up 4 percent year-on-year.
Vietnam is one of the most important rice producers and exporters in the world. Rice plays the most important role among agricultural commodities in Vietnam in terms of food security, rural wages and employment, as well as export revenues.
Vietnamese rice has been present in 135 countries and regions worldwide.