THAILAND has approved a plan worth Baht 15 billion ($472 million) to buy 200,000 mt of natural rubber from local growers, news reports said Tuesday.
The plan is aimed at supporting local natural rubber prices at Baht 120/kg.
On Tuesday, the Rubber Research Institute of Thailand said local prices stood at Baht 122/kg, up 2.5% from Monday, and their highest level since November 1, 2011.
Under the plan, about Baht 10 billion will be given to the Rubber Estate Organisation to buy rubber directly from farmers and store it in state-run warehouses. And Baht 5 billion will be handed over to the Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives to support farming organizations.
Separately, the state-owned Bank for Agriculture will give another Baht 2 billion to farming cooperatives to buy rubber immediately above market rates, said Apichart Jongskul, secretary-general of the Office of Agricultural Economics.
n 2011, Thailand produced about 3.4 million mt of natural rubber, or nearly 34% of the 10.1 million mt produced by members of the Association of Natural Rubber Producing Countries, estimates from the association showed.
Based on the 2011 figures, the 200,000 mt to be bought would represent about 5.9% of the production.
The ANRPC comprises Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia – the top three producers – Cambodia, China, India, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka and Vietnam.