Thai Deputy Agriculture Minister Amnuay Patise is confident that rubber sheets from the newly-harvested crops expected in mid-May will fetch between 65-75 baht per kilogramme and the prices will steadily improve afterward.
He attributed the good price prospect for rubber to fact that the ministry had been allocated with 10 billion baht to purchase up to 200,000 tonnes of rubber sheets in two lots – 100,000 tonnes with 4 billion baht and and the rest with 6 billlion baht – through the rubber buffer stock programme.
On top of that, Mr Amnuay said that China’s Hainan company had purchased 200,000 tonnes of top-grade Thai rubber at a price of 63 baht a kilogramme of which 20,000 tonnes have already been delivered with the rest to be delivered within 14 months.
He expected good news from the talks on March 12 between Thai and Chinese officials on barter deal between Thai rice and rubber with Chinese rail system.
He said Russia had also expressed interest to buy Thai rubber.
Meanwhile, the economic ministers have ordered the Highways Department and the Department of Rural Roads to use more rubber in road construction and maintenance under a 40 billion baht loan project to boost rubber prices.
It is predicted that about 30,000 tonnes of rubber will be used by the two departments in road construction and maintenance this year.