Thursday, January 13, 2011

Green gram prices shoot up five percent

Thursday, 13 January 2011 20:15 Kyaw Kha

Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – After unseasonable rain, the demand of green gram in the market is rising fast. The price of high quality green gram rose about five percent on Wednesday.

In 2010, Burma was the second largest pulse and bean exporter after Canada.

The higher quality ready-for-export green gram price at the Bayintnaung commodity exchange in Rangoon early this month was 630,000 kyat (about US$ 800) per 60-viss (216 lbs). On Wednesday, the price was 675,000 kyat, an increase of 45,000 kyat (about $50) or five percent.

‘The demand for this pulse is getting higher in the Rangoon market now. The price is also getting higher’, an official at the Bayintnaung commodity exchange told Mizzima.

The current price at the Bayintnaung commodity exchange for green gram ‘Special Quality Ready Cargo’ – SQRC) is 820,000 per 60-viss bag. The price of ordinary ‘Raw Quality’-RQ) is about 800,000 (US$ 1,000) per 60-viss bag.

The untimely rain this winter season damaged some green gram crops and is likely the cause of the price rise, said a pulse and bean trader.

Local farmers said that untimely rain on January 7 also damaged their crops in Irrawaddy, Rangoon, Pegu, Naypyidaw and Magwe divisions by flooding the farmlands of green gram, chili, salt fields and rice fields, which were under harvest.

“No one expected heavy rain at this time. The green gram and chili plants were so young when it rained. The rainwater flooded the farmlands and the plants were damaged, and also the salt fields’, said a farmer in Wakema Township.

India is the major export market for Burmese green gram. Other major export markets are China, Japan, Korea, Thailand, Pakistan, Malaysia and Singapore.

For the 2010-2011 fiscal year, 250,000 tons of green gram was exported through mid-September The total export figure in the 2009-2010 fiscal year was 290,000 tons, according to Trade and Commerce Ministry figures.

According to an announcement by the meteorology office in Naypyidaw, record rainfall was recorded at monitoring stations in Rakhine, Magwe, Pegu and Rangoon states and divisions.

A new record rainfall of 2.83 inches broke the old record of 0.91 inches (23 mm) in 1971 at the Thandwe monitoring station in Rakhine State. At Pyi station, a new rainfall record of 1.18 inches broke the old record of 0.94 inches (24 mm).

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