Ending a seven-year boycott, Iraq again is buying Thai rice.
The Thai Rice Mills Association said Sept. 19 that member Tanasan Rice Plc. recently signed a contract with Iraqi importers to supply 44,000 tons of 100-percent white rice.
Association President Kriangsak Tabnanon said this will be the second lot that Iraq has bought from Thailand this year. The first lot of 44,000 tons was delivered on Aug. 18.
The transaction marks a historic moment for rice exports as Iraq had boycotted rice from Thailand for seven years over quality concerns.
He said the ban was the result of a Thai exporter, who had delivered 110,000 tons of rice to Iraq in 2014, failing to meet the country’s quality standards. The Iraqi importers also claimed that the delivered rice was 10 percent less than what was agreed on, which had led to a ban on Thai rice that lasted 84 months.
Kriangsak said the end of the ban is great news for Thai rice exporters. Iraq has been a long-time customer of Thailand and could buy more rice.
The association urges all exporters to give rice quality top priority, to strengthen customer confidence so as to secure more orders in the future.