HANOI, Jan. 2 (Xinhua) -- Vietnam exported roughly 5.9 million tons of rice worth nearly 2.7 billion U.S. dollars in 2017, posting respective year-on-year rises of 20.5 percent and 20.8 percent.
Of the rice volume, nearly 40 percent went to China, and 9.3 percent to the Philippines, according to the General Department of Vietnam Customs on Tuesday.
Vietnam is likely to export 6.3 million tons of rice in 2018, mainly due to high demand from the Southeast Asian market, especially the Philippines, local traders predicted.
Vietnam's paddy rice-growing area was over 7.7 million hectares in 2017, down 26,100 hectares against 2016, said the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
As a result, the country's paddy rice output dropped for the first time over the past 20 years to 42.8 million tons in 2017.