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Vietnam suspends rice export to ensure food security in face of COVID-19

 A leading official of the General Department of Vietnam Customs just signed an urgent document sent to the provincial and municipal Departments of Customs, asking them to suspend the export of rice from the country starting from 0:00am of March 24.

In the document, Deputy General Director Mai Xuan Thanh said this is to implement a conclusion by Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc at a meeting of the cabinet on ensuring the food security in the context of the COVID-19. However, those shipments with customs registration forms completed before the stroke of that time will go as usual.

Provincial and municipal customs department need to intensify the fight against the smuggling of the food, the document said.

On March 18, PM Phuc presided over the meeting, during which he stressed the food security must be ensured in a really firm way under any circumstance.

Rice is the main food for the Vietnamese people, and also the country’s major hard currency earner. Last year, Vietnam exported 6.37 million tonnes of rice, earning 2.81 billion USD, an increase of 4.1 percent in volume but a decline of 8.4 percent in revenue compared to those a year earlier.