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MUMBAI/ HANOI/ BANGKOK/DHAKA: Indian export prices of rice edged up this week on an improvement in demand and an appreciation in rupee, while Vietnam rates are expected to remain higher on economic and political concerns.

Top exporter India’s 5% broken parboiled variety was quoted at $383 to $389 per tonne this week, up from the last week’s $380 to $385. “There was (a) broader recovery in prices of all agricultural commodities in the past few days.

It has also been helping rice prices to move higher,” said an exporter based at Kakinada in southern state of Andhra Pradesh. Vietnam’s 5% broken rice were offered at $460 per tonne on Thursday, unchanged from a week ago.

State media cited Nguyen Ngoc Nam, chairman of Vietnam Food Association, saying rice prices will stay at high levels for the short term as global economic and political uncertainty has prompted countries to raise their food reserves.

Vietnam’s central bank had said earlier this week that it is under pressure to support economic growth while keeping the banking system and the foreign exchange market stable.

Traders said Vietnam’s rice shipments are estimated at 6.5-6.7 million tonnes this year, down from 7.1 million tonnes last year.

Thailand’s 5% broken rice prices were quoted at $480 to $482 per tonne, from last week’s $475 to $482. “Domestic prices are high as we approach the end of the harvesting season and there’s lower supply,” a Bangkok-based trader said.

Meanwhile, the World Bank in its latest report noted “the price for coarse rice remains volatile, but Bangladesh had a favourable Boro harvest, and public granaries are being restocked.”

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