• Saturday, July 20, 2024
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BusinessDay

Letter to the Editor

Letter to the Editor

Dear Editor-in-Chief,

The report “Thai rice stored for 10 yrs heading for Africa’s largest market” by Josephine Okolie in the Agriculture section of 14th May’s BusinessDay has urged me to write to you in order to share attest factual points to make crystal clear of the entire picture.

I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely assure and convey to you some of the following points;

As an outset, the Deputy Prime Minister/Minister of Commerce never stated that “Thailand would only export ‘old’ rice to Africa” which was also taken out of context. He shared information with the media through an interview in the past, Africa was a popular market for Thai rice, including aged rice, which has multiple purposes.

To the nation, rice is a very important export product for Thailand. The quality of Thai rice as well as the quality control test procedures for Thai rice have been trusted by importers around the world for a long time.

Professionally, longtime importers of Thai rice would know that the department of Foreign Trade, Ministry of Commerce is responsible for inspecting the quality of rice in G-to-G purchases, and that in B-to-B purchases, the inspection is conducted by a certified surveyor. It is proven that best quality and best practice assembles Thailand’s credibility on the matter.

Dear Editor-in-Chief,

Allow me, once again, to assure you that Thailand advances relations with our friends in Africa based firmly on principles of equality, trust and mutual benefit. Rest assured that all Thai export products, including rice, must pass strict quality controls, in accordance with established standards and procedures, in order to maintain the high standards of Thai products.

As a prior plan, this year, the Deputy Prime Minister/Minister of Commerce intends to travel to South Africa to promote the market of all Thai products there, including all types of Thai rice.

I wish this letter would be a source of some missing actuality.

1. The rumours about the 10 years old rice that have been in the social media are politically driven and the Deputy Prime Minister/Minister of Commerce never stated that the Government will export old rice to Africa.

2. If Nigeria intends to buy Thai rice, it will be of the highest quality.

3. Nigeria has banned the importation of Thai rice for many years and has not been importing rice from Thailand since its internal policies to promote domestic production.

4. The type of rice that Nigeria used to buy from Thailand is Par-boiled rice and not jasmine rice which is the rice that has been in the headlines.

Therefore, please be assured that Thailand will never do anything to risk our good relations. We look forward to continuing working together with our African counterparts to overcome common challenges and work towards a more secure, prosperous and sustainable future for the mutual benefit of our countries and peoples.

 

Sincerely yours,

Kittisak Klomchit, Thai Ambassador to Nigeria.