Saturday, January 17, 2015

16th January (Friday),2015 Daily Global Rice E-Newsletter by Riceplus Magazine

Cuba:  First Steps Toward Market Access        
A hot commodity in Havana 
WASHINGTON, DC -- Following President Obama's announcement last month that the U.S. would begin to re-engage in trade, travel, and diplomatic relations with Cuba,U.S. policy changes that alter previous travel and trade regulations were announced by the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) yesterday and published today in the Federal Register.  These changes go into effect immediately. On the trade front, OFAC announced that the interpretation of "cash in advance" would revert to the pre-2005 definition, meaning "cash before transfer of title or control.
"  This new interpretation is an important, positive move, and has long been advocated by the USA Rice Federation.  Another new and positive regulatory change will allow U.S. financial institutions to open accounts at Cuban banks to facilitate transactions. "Up until now, U.S. government restrictions have limited the ability of the U.S. industry to compete in Cuba," said USA Rice President & CEO Betsy Ward.  "Foreign competitors, have stepped in since they can provide credit and face none of the barriers to trade that we have had imposed on us.
" Tourist travel with Cuba remains prohibited, but new travel policies include expanded categories under which U.S. citizens can travel to Cuba and have eliminated the need to obtain a license from OFAC prior to travel.  For instance, professional research and meetings travel now falls under a general license. U.S. citizens may also use their debit or credit cards in Cuba, and airlines may operate flights to and from Cuba."USA Rice has been advocating for open trade and travel with Cuba since the mid-1990's and we were the first U.S. ommodity back in Cuba in 1999," said Ward.
 "Our commitment to the market and the Cuban people is genuine. We understand these are the first steps in the process but we're ready to engage with Congress both independently and through the U.S. Agriculture for Cuba Coalition (USACC) to advocate for complete normalization of trade with Cuba."
 Contact:  Kristen Dayton (703) 236-1464

New rice trials in Mackay to give cane growers more options

David Sparkes
Updated Thu at 5:30pmThu 15 Jan 2015, 5:30pm
A trial has begun near Mackay to see if a new variety of rice can be successfully grown in the region.
If successful, it will give the Mackay region's cane growers a reliable crop to use on fallow ground, bringing in extra income and boosting the health of the land.Media player: "Space" to play, "M" to mute, "left" and "right" to seek.
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Agricultural consultancy, Farmacist, was busy planting the rice seed over 11 hectares on a cane property in Walkerston on Thursday.The team were planting about 1.3 tonnes of doongarra seed, a variety that grows on dry land, rather than in submerged paddy fields like conventional rice.
Description: Farmacist consultant Tony Crowley.jpgThe variety has been successfully trialled on a large scale further north in the Burdekin, where the climate is drier.However, it has never been tried on a large scale in the Mackay region, where there is more rain and humidity.Farmacist consultant, Tony Crowley, said small trials had been successful in the Mackay region, but those could not give an understanding of the problems or economics of growing a larger crop.He said he is confident the trial will show doongarra rice is suitable for the Mackay region and the trial will provide much needed knowledge on the best way to manage the crop.
Description: Farmacist planting rice in Walkerston 1.jpg"(Walkerston cane grower) Andrew Barfield has been working with this seed for nearly twelve years now, trying all different varieties, and he has finally got a variety that should grow in the wet tropics in Mackay," Mr Crowley said."It is an aerobic variety, which means it doesn't need to grow in a rice paddy field, it grows above the ground."(It's new) in Mackay to grow rice not in a paddy field, but to grow it aerobically."We want to get a yield return out of the paddock, watch all our costs, see what we do. We've completed all the soil tests, nutrient tests and all those sort of tests and we will analyse the ground and see what happens with the crop."

Vietnam’s reliance on imports in agriculture leaves less profit for farmers

Vietnam had a bumper 2014 with bountiful crops and high farm produce export prices, but farmers believe there is nothing to be happy about.Analysts noted that though the production value and export turnover were high, the money farmers could pocket was modest. The problem lies in the fact that Vietnam had to import many kinds of raw materials.A report by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) showed that the total farm, forestry and seafood produce import turnover in the first 11 months of 2014 reached $19.78 billion, of which the majority were agricultural materials.

Vietnam had to spend $690 million on pesticides and input material imports during that period and $774 million in 2014, an increase of 3.5 percent over 2013.Vietnam vows to develop the animal husbandry, but in order to do that, it has to import most of the animal feed products needed. The import turnover reached $3.24 billion in 2014, higher by 5.2 percent over 2013 and higher than the money Vietnam earned from rice exports.Vietnam cannot produce plant seeds. MARD reported that Vietnam had to spend $500 million to import 8,000 tons of seeds for the country’s 700,000 hectares of vegetable area in 2013.Dr. Le Hung Quoc, former head of the MARD’s Plantation Agency, said these facts are not surprising.

He said that all the input materials used in agricultural production in Vietnam are imports (except farmers and land).“The best varieties used in Vietnam are imports,” he said. “Vietnam even cannot make cabbage, cauliflower, kohlrabi, carrot, cucumber, tomato seeds, the popular kinds of vegetables.”How much does Vietnam earn from farm exports?

Though Vietnam is the world’s biggest rice exporter, the money it can pocket form rice exports is small.The Vietnam’s rice export price hovers around $400-450 per ton, which is lower by $50-75 per ton if compared with the products of the same kinds from India, Pakistan and Thailand.

While government agencies report great achievements in the agriculture sector at workshops and conferences, Vietnamese farmers have quietly given up their rice fields.According to MARD, 42,785 households gave up farming in 2012-2013, leaving 6,882 hectares idle. As many as 3,407 households gave back agricultural land to the state.The Chair of the Vietnam Farmers’ Association, Nguyen Quoc Cuong, said farmers can make a profit of only VND100,000-200,000 per 360 square meters from every crop within a three month period.

Punjab planning to conduct analysis of soils, water to develop agriculture
January 17, 2015
Our Staff Reporter
LAHORE - Punjab Government is planning to conduct chemical analysis of soils consisting of 21 million acres and water analysis of one million tube wells to promote balanced use of fertilizers and reduce production costs. This was stated by Rashid Mehmood Secretary Agriculture Punjab while presiding a meeting of Agricultural Scientists held at Ayub Agricultural Research Institute to review the agricultural research activities of Rice Research Institute Kala Shah Kaku.

The secretary agriculture asked the agricultural scientists to develop new hybrid rice varieties to increase rice export. Dr. Abid Mehmood Directore General Agricultural Research Punjab, Professor Dr. Iqrar Ahmad khan, Vice Chancellor University of Faisalabad, Agricultural Scientists, extension workers and farmers attended the meeting. Secretary Agriculture stated that new crop varieties developed by agriculture scientists possess high yield potential but our average per acre yield is very low. Dr. Abid Mehmood informed the meeting that Pakistan is the 4th largest country in rice production and that the scientists of Rice Research Institute Kala Shah Kaku have developed 24 new rice varieties.

Prof Dr. Iqrar Ahmad informed that in order to increase rice production 80000 plants per acre are required whereas the farmers plant 50 to 60 thousand plants per acre. Dr Muhammad Akhtar Director Rice Research Institute Kala Shah Kaku briefed the meeting that last year rice was cultivated on 4.5 million acres and 3.54 million tons production was obtained.

Also published in Business Recorder Pakistan

Arsenic In Your Rice? Consumer Reports Issues Guidelines

Why children should eat less rice products, according to Consumer Reports


By Consumer Reports

It's very possible that there are levels are arsenic in the food you eat every day; much of it found in rice and other grains. In fact, some is eaten by children. While some is unavoidable, there are new guidelines limiting how much rice you and your children should eat. NBC 7's Consumer Bob has the options you might want to consider. (Published Thursday, Jan 15, 2015)
Thursday, Jan 15, 2015 • Updated at 7:57 PM PST
Consumer Reports has issued new guidelines on how much rice you and your children should eat.The ratings magazine analyzed Food and Drug Administration data on more than 600 foods that contain rice and found some with worrisome levels of inorganic arsenic, which is linked to several types of cancer.The Food and Drug Administration recommends parents consider other options rather than rice cereal for their children’s first solid food.
Consumer Reports’ analysis found that hot rice cereal and rice pasta can have much more arsenic than its lab saw in previous tests.So Consumer Reports now recommends that children rarely eat these foods, which means not more than twice a month. And the group recommends children under five limit rice drinks, rice cakes and ready-to-eat rice cereals. Levels of arsenic vary.The reviewers based their recommendations on the higher levels in each food group to offer consumers the best protection. As for rice itself, lab tests in 2012 found high levels of inorganic arsenic in white rice and even higher levels in brown rice.
Consumer Reports has tested other types of rice and other grains and has found several alternatives with much lower levels of inorganic arsenic. Some good choices — sushi rice from the U.S. and white basmati rice from California, India and Pakistan. On average they had half the amount of arsenic as most other types of rice.And brown basmati rice from California, India and Pakistan has about one third less inorganic arsenic than other brown rice. Other good options — bulgur, barley and faro, as well as gluten-free grains like amaranth, buckwheat, millet and quinoa.In response to Consumer Reports’ investigation, the USA Rice Federation issued this statement:
“Research conducted by the Food and Drug Administration and U.S. rice industry shows arsenic levels found in U.S.-grown rice are below safe maximum levels established this year by the World Health Organization. Studies show that including white or brown rice in the diet provides measureable health benefits that outweigh the potential risks associated with exposure to trace levels of arsenic. The U.S. rice industry is committed to growing a safe and healthy product; we continuously test our crop, and research ways of reducing the already low levels of arsenic found in rice even further."
The Food & Drug Administration issued this statement:
"The FDA’s ongoing assessment of arsenic in rice remains a priority for the agency. Last year, the FDA released what we believe to be the largest set of test results to date on the presence of arsenic in rice and rice products, and we are planning to release a draft assessment of the potential health risks associated with the consumption of arsenic in these same foods.
Until that review is completed, the agency continues to recommend that consumers, including pregnant women, eat a well-balanced diet containing a variety of grains. Parents should feed infants and toddlers a variety of grains as well, and consider options other than rice cereal for a child’s first solid food. Published studies and ongoing FDA research indicate that cooking rice in excess volumes of water – five to six times that of the rice – and draining the water can reduce the arsenic content, though it may also reduce the nutritional value of the rice."

Cuban trade holds many benefits for Louisiana

Jessica Goff,8:56 p.m. CST January 16, 2015
(Photo: By Jessica Goff)
Description: photo (2).JPGLouisiana is ready to regain a major industry it lost 50 years ago when the United States placed an embargo on Cuba."Prior to the embargo, Cuba was the largest importer of Louisiana rice," said Kevin M. Berken, chairman of Louisiana Rice Promotion Board, Friday inside the Petroleum Club. "So it is critically important for us to be able open trade with other countries, Cuba being the main focus. It has been a focus for the last 20 or 30 years."
Berken was one of four panelists Friday who spoke during a conference addressing the recent U.S. decision to lift portions of the longstanding embargo. The conference was hosted by Le Centre International de Lafayette."We are not going to talk about politics. We are going to talk about who's against and who's for," said Philippe Gustin, international trade manager for the center, before introducing speakers.
"We are going to talk about how Louisiana and Cuban people can work together to conduct business and conduct cultural exchange and visit each other."Other panelists included Gary P. LaGrange, president and CEO of the Port of New Orleans; Charles Larroque, executive director of Council for the Development of French in Louisiana; and Larry Sides, president of SIDES & Associates.The conference came the day after the U.S. Departments of the Treasury and Commerce announced President Barack Obama's amendments to existing Cuban sanctions, Gustin said.
These changes will immediately enable the American people to provide more resources to empower the Cuban population to become less dependent upon the state-driven economy, and help facilitate our growing relationship with the Cuban people," the White House said in its press release Thursday.As of now, Mexico is the largest importer of U.S. rice with 800,000 metric tons a year, Berken said. But the rice industry wants to re-establish its relationship with the Caribbean country that once demanded the domestically grown crop."Cuba is the second largest importer of rice in the Americas.
 They have the highest per capita consumption of rice, which is about 200 pounds," he said. Cuba grows about 400,000 metric tons of its own rice, but imports 600,000 metric tons, or $300 million worth, Berken said.As of now, its biggest supplier is Vietnam."When we were sending rice there in the early 2000s, there were lines formed around the block and people would wait for hours trying to get our rice," Berken said. "The Cuban people like the rice we grow here."Although the embargo was never lifted, tension between the U.S. and Cuba eased a bit during the Clinton administration, Sides said.Sides has traveled to Cuba 24 times in the last 15 year on the religious license.
 He said he does not get involved in any political aspect of the country. He merely goes for mission trips and for leisure, he said."I'm simply fascinated with the country," Sides said Friday. The only way the U.S. will fully be able to establish a diplomatic relationship with the country, and that includes tourism, is for the U.S. to completely lift the embargo, he said.LaGrange agrees."Eventually, the embargo will be lifted," Lagrange said, "and there isn't a thing in the world that Cuba doesn't need.
"The country is only 700 miles from Louisiana's coast, making it prime for convenient trade especially from the Port of New Orleans, LaGrange said.There's talk of a Cuban consulate being built in the U.S. and New Orleans may be vying against Tampa, Florida, as a host city, he said.Culturally, Cuba's Creole heritage could be well connected to Acadiana, Larroque said."Louisiana should be next in line," he said. "We need a consulate in New Orleans."I believe we have a wonderful opportunity to resist the economic dark clouds that are on the horizon by again adding the value to the true Louisiana brand, which is Creole," he said. "It's Cajun; it's Creole — it's old colonial Creole and maybe a new element to the mix is Cuban Creole."
Look 'Inside the Embargo'
Larry Sides has made 24 humanitarian trips to Cuba over the past 14 years, using his camera to document life inside the embargo. At 5:30 p.m. Jan. 22, Sides will present "Inside the Embargo," a look at life in Cuba at The Daily Advertiser Community Room, 1100 Bertrand Drive, Lafayette.

CME Group/Closing Rough Rice Futures  
CME Group (Prelim):  Closing Rough Rice Futures for January 16

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March 2015
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July 2015
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January 2016
March 2016

Rice exports lag behind expectations

Description: Rice exports lag behind expectationsVietnam exported 6,316 million ton of rice worth US$2,789 billion last year. The export volume lags behind the intended number of 7 million tons and becomes the lowest for the last four years, reported the Vietnam Food Association.The rice export last year reduced 300,000 tons in volume and US$100 million in value over 2013.Meantime Thailand exported 9.49 million tons equivalent to US$4.69 billion in the first 11 months of 2014, an increase of 60 percent in volume and 18 percent in value over the same period in the previous year.Rice prices remain low in the Mekong Delta ranging from VND6,700-7,000 a kilogram.

Image: Rice harvest in the Mekong Delta province of Bac Lieu (Photo: SGGP)

Rice inventory good for 89 days – PSA

By Czeriza Valencia (The Philippine Star) | 

Description:, Philippines - Domestic rice stock inventory remains sufficient for 89 days as of December, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported.The total rice stock inventory as of December was 3.03 million metric tons (MT), up 2.7 percent from the previous month’s inventory of 2.95 million MT. Year-on-year, this was higher than the inventory of 2.49 million MT.Month-on-month, the volume of rice stocks in commercial warehouses rose 8.3 percent. Stocks in NFA depositories – 96.5 percent of which was imported rice – rose 12.7 percent. Rice stock levels in households decreased by 3.2 percent.
Year-on-year, rice stock levels in all sectors rose. Stocks held in households and in commercial warehouses increased nine percent and 29.5 percent respectively. Rice stocks in NFA depositories also increased by 62 percent.Stocks held in households would be sufficient for 46 days, those in commercial warehouses would be enough for 29 days, while those held in depositories of the National Food Authority (NFA) would cover 14 days.Around 51.7 percent of the total rice stock inventory in December were with households, 32.3 percent were held in commercial warehouses and 16 percent are in NFA depositories.
Business ( Article MRec ), pagematch: 1, sectionmatch: 1
Domestic corn stock inventory in December, meanwhile, fell 9.8 percent to 216,000 MT from 239, 500 MT in the previous month. Year-on-year, however, this was higher by 14.1 percent than the inventory of 189, 400 thousand in the same period in 2013.Around 56.6 percent of the December corn stock inventory were with commercial warehouses, 42.6 percent were with households and 0.8 percent were held in NFA depositories.
Month-on-month, corn stock levels in all sectors fell. Stocks in households fell by 15.5 percent, stocks in commercial warehouses 5.1 percent, and in NFA depositories, by 6.9 percent.Year-on-year, stock levels in households and in commercial warehouses were up 12.3 percent and 26.1 percent, respectively. Stocks in NFA depositories fell 84.1 percent.

Rice exports of Vietnam declines 3.2% to 6.38 million tonnes

Description: Rice exports of Vietnam declines 3.2% to 6.38 million tonnesHANOI: The rice exports of Vietnam dropped 3.2 percent last year to 6.38 million tonnes, Vietnam Customs said. On the other hand, the estimate of government is 6.41 million tonnes .The grain exports have generated $2.95 billion in 2014, up 1.1 percent from the previous year, the customs department, run by the Finance Ministry, said in its monthly report.Last month, the government estimated Vietnam’s rice shipment in the whole of 2014 at 6.41 million tonnes, down 2.7 percent from the previous year.

Thailand Remains Leading Rice Exporter  
   Imagen activaBangkok, Jan 15 (Prensa Latina) Thailand will continue this year as the leading exporter of rice with a turnover of 11 million tons, according to forecast today of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). The source says the two main competitors, India and Vietnam expect sales for eight and seven million tonnes, respectively.Regarding target Description: Imagen activamarkets in Asia, China will continue to lead with a calculated acquisition in 2.800 000 tons, followed by the Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia with a million each.FAO estimates that global consumption of the grass will be 500 million tonnes in 2015, representing an increase of 1.7 percent compared with 2014.
The honorary president of the Thai Rice Exporters Association, Chukiat Ophaswongse commented here that thanks to the price adjustment to equalize rates of its rivals, the rice export volume increased again.According to a report of that entity, the Thai grain stood at $ 390 per ton in the world market while for India and Vietnam is 420 and 400, respectively.

Modificado el ( jueves, 15 de enero de 2015 )

ffect of Blockade

Farmers count loss as paddy prices fall

Quamrul Islam Rubaiyat, Thakurgaon
Rice sellers at Gorea Haat in Thakurgaon Sadar upazila pass their time mostly doing other works as the market sees only a few customers due to the transport problem amid the countrywide nonstop blockade enforced by the BNP-led 20-party alliance. PHOTO: STAR
Description: Rice sellers at Gorea Haat in Thakurgaon Sadar upazila pass their time mostly doing other works as the market sees only a few customers due to the transport problem amid the countrywide nonstop blockade enforced by the BNP-led 20-party alliance. PHOTO: STARThe price of recently harvested aman paddy has started falling in the local markets of Thakurgaon and Panchagarh districts due to transportation problem amid BNP-sponsored nonstop countrywide blockade from January 5.Despite bumper yield, especially the share-croppers, marginal and small farmers are counting losses as they have to sell their produces to manage expenses for cultivating boro paddy and robi crops including wheat, potato, maize and groundnut in the ongoing peak cultivation season.Meanwhile, a section of profit-greedy traders have raised prices of agro-inputs like seeds, fertilizers and pesticides, taking advantage of the frequent blockades, much to the worry of the small-scale farmers.
During a visit to different local markets including Khochabari, Gorea, Bhulli and Farabari Bazar in Thakurgaon Sadar upazila and Boda, Moidandighi and Sakoya hats in Boda upazila of Panchagarh, this correspondent saw the small farmers sold aman paddy for prices lower than that of a week ago.Osman Ali, 35, a marginal farmer of Shahapara village in Boda upazila, said “Eight days ago, I sold 12 maunds of paddy at Tk730 per maund. But now the price has reduced to Tk 660. Despite low price, we have to sell paddy to manage expenses of potato and maize cultivation.”The nonstop blockade for over a week has led to fall of aman paddy price by Tk 70-80 per maund, said Anikul Barman, 55, a share-cropper of Moidandighi village in Boda.“Besides, we have to buy agro-inputs with high price as the trader hiked price on the pretext of supply shortage,” he said.
Taking the opportunity of small farmers' helpless situation and obstruction in carrying goods due to blockade, some local traders are hoarding huge paddy after buying it for low prices, markets sources alleged. Kademul Islam, 48, of Gorea village in Thakurgaon Sadar upazila, said the paddy price at Gorea hat is gradually falling as the paddy buyers from other districts are unable to come to the local market due to transportation problem.Taking advantage of inadequate buyers, several local buyers of Gorea have made a syndicate and they are buying paddy for lower prices, Kademul alleged.Md Zaman, a rice mill owner and rice trader of Boda, told this correspondent paddy price has continued decreasing as supply to other districts including Dinajpur, Joypurhat, Bogra, Natore and Dhaka remained virtually suspended due to non-stop blockade.Local traders are buying lesser amount of paddy from the markets as they can not supply it to outside the district, he said. 
According to sources of the Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE), farmers of Thakurgaon district had cultivated aman paddy on 1 lakh 28 thousand 435 hectares of land against the target of 1 lakh 20 thousand 995 hectares with a production target of 3 lakh 28 thousand 387 tonnes.The farmers have produced 3 lakh 88 thousand 151 tonnes.In Panchagarh, about 95,185 hectares land had been brought under aman cultivation against the target of 94,524 hectares with a production target of 2 lakh 54 thousand 676 tonnes.The growers have produced 2 lakh 75 thousand 253 tonnes of aman rice.
Published: 12:00 am Friday, January 16, 2015
Last modified: 11:32 pm Thursday, January 15, 2015

REAP urges government to enhance exports

Published: January 16, 2015
Pakistan exported 27,805 tons of rice to Bahrain in fiscal year ending on June 30, 2014, worth $2.6 million. STOCK IMAGE
Description: The government must focus on rice export markets of China, Malaysia, Indonesia and Bahrain as that will ultimately support all stakeholders, particularly rice growers, said Rice Exporters Association of Pakistan (REAP) Chairman Rafique Suleman.“Depressed prices in international rice markets are affecting the agriculture sector of all rice-exporting countries in the world; Pakistan is not an exception,” he said in a statement.

He said Bahrain is a potential market for Pakistani rice and REAP urges the government to improve economic relations with the country to enhance bilateral trade.He said that there are approximately 100,000 Pakistanis living in Bahrain and REAP welcomed the recent announcement of the government of Bahrain to award dual nationality to some of them.
“Bilateral trade between the two countries currently stands at $200 million, and there is still immense scope for expansion,” he said.Pakistan exported 27,805 tons of rice to Bahrain in fiscal year ending on June 30, 2014, worth $2.6 million.REAP chairman noted that China has made several government-to-government  deals with neighbouring countries like Thailand and Cambodia, which in effect, may hurt Pakistani rice exports to China.
“Since the total rice import quota of China is limited, the market share of Pakistani rice in China will eventually decline with these agreements,’ he remarked.“We request the government to take similar steps like China has taken up with Thailand and Cambodia in order to stabilise the rice trade between China and Pakistan. We hope we could export additional 200,000 tons good quality Pakistani rice every year, starting from year 2015,” he said.Pakistan exported 353,673 tons of rice to China in fiscal year 2014, worth $128 million.He also highlighted that the trade balance between Pakistan and Malaysia was in favour of Malaysia because of the huge quantity of palm oil that Pakistan imports..
Published in The Express Tribune, January 16th, 2015.
Also published in



Last chance for Yingluck to answer rice questions

Published: 16 Jan 2015 at 19.29

Online news: Politics

Writer: Manop Thip-osod and Aekarach Sattaburuth


Yingluck Shinawatra faces another session in the hot seat next week after failing to show up in person on Friday to answer legislators' questions about her government's failed rice-pledging programme. A National Legislative Assembly member reads questions about former premier Yingluck Shinawatra's rice-pledging scheme to her representatives: former deputy premier Kittiratt Na-Ranong, left, and her lawyer Norawit Lalaeng. (Photo by Chanat Katanyu)


The former prime minister sent others to the National Legislative Assembly (NLA) to represent her, including former deputy premier Kittiratt Na Ranong. But NLA members refused to let them answer the questions that had been prepared.The NLA has demanded to hear the answers directly from Ms Yingluck, but time is running out as a vote on whether to impeach her is scheduled for next Friday.The National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) has recommended that Ms Yingluck be retroactively removed from the premiership and have her political rights suspended as she failed to stop the rice scheme, despite being warned that it would end with huge losses to taxpayers.


On Friday Ms Yingluck sent nine representatives including former ministers and lawyers to answer the questions on her behalf but the NLA members who posed the questions refused to let the representatives answer.Pichit Chuenban, a lawyer for Ms Yingluck's Pheu Thai Party, complained about the NLA's decision not to allow the former premier's representatives to answer the prepared questions.NLA vice president Surachai Liangboonlertchai then told the representatives to ask Ms Yingluck to show up by 6pm to supply answers. Her representatives replied that they could not contact Ms Yingluck and did not know where she was.


Earlier report on Yingluck no-show


NLA members then read out the questions they wanted to pose to Ms Yingluck. They dealt with her responsibility for the damage that her rice scheme caused, including a huge loss and extensive corruption that she failed to bring to an end.The Finance Ministry earlier concluded that the rice scheme caused a loss of at least 500 billion baht.A question from NLA member Kitti Wasinont sought Ms Yingluck's answer on why she did not stop the rice scheme although many organisations informed her that the scheme was losing billions of baht and was plagued with corruption. In addition, no government-to-government rice trades took place as ministers had claimed, and some traders acquired pledged rice at low prices and made windfall profits from resales.


Among those delivering the warnings were the NACC, the Office of the Auditor General and the Thailand Development Research Institute.NLA member Thaweesak Sootkawatin asked if the rice scheme was merely a tactic of Pheu Thai to win an election as the Yingluck government actually bought rice at prices nearly 50% above market prices.NLA member ACM Chalee Janruang asked whether Ms Yingluck would repeat such a programme that seemingly consumed huge sums from the government's coffers if she had a chance to return to government.


NLA member Mahannop Detpitak asked how Ms Yingluck as the prime minister would take responsibility for the losses resulting from the scheme.NLA member Somchai Sawaengkan asked how Ms Yingluck planned to compensate the families of 16 rice growers who had committed suicide while waiting for her government to pay for their pledged rice.NLA member Dr Jet Siratharanont commented that Ms Yingluck did not show up on Friday because she wanted to postpone her answers to the date of her closing statement next Thursday.This way, he said, Ms Yingluck would have an advantage because she would know the questions in advance and would have more time to prepare her replies.


Rice production seen at 27.1m tonnes

Published: 16 Jan 2015 at 17.03
Online news: News
Thailand’s unmilled rice production from the 2014/2015 main crop is estimated at 27.1 million tonnes, a by 0.06% increase from the previous season, the Office of Agriculture and Economics said. Overall rice plantations in the season have been declining since institution of a state policy to discourage farmers from growing several crops a year for fear of water shortages, especially in irrigated areas. The country has around 65 million rai of plantation area.Falling rice prices also turned farmers to other crops, according to OAE secretary-general  Lersak
Riewtrakulpaibul.Farmers earned an average 7,862 and 7,878 baht a tonne of paddy in November and December, when a large amount of paddy entered the market. The figures were lower than the average of 8,130 baht farmers received from selling paddy last year.OAE reports that, since the start of the season in October, about 25.5 million tonnes of paddy were harvested, accounting for 94% of the total production.

Princeton Researchers Build Rice-Grain Sized Laser Powered By Single Electrons
Discussion in 'Electrical | Electronics | Communications' started by Ankita Katdare, Yesterday at 10:18 AM. 

by Ankita Katdare, Jan 16, 2015 at 10:18 AM
Description: rice-grain-laser-quantum-computing.Description: princeton-university-rice-grain-sized-laser-research-jason-petta.A laser device the size of a rice-grain, that uses one-billionth of the electric power a hair dryer needs, has been built by Princeton University researchers in their attempt to study quantum computing. Set out to demonstrate the basic interactions between the moving electrons and light along with an aim to explore the use of quantum bits (or qubits), the research team at Princeton led by Jason Petta, an associate professor of physics, build a super tiny microwave laser (or what's called a 'maser') which is powered by single electrons channeled through quantum dots.

These quantum dots are nothing but the smallest components of semiconductor material that act like single atoms. Take a moment to let that thought sink in and realize that this is a significant step towards developing quantum-computing systems of the future out of semiconductor materials. If you thought electronic devices are only getting smaller by the day, here's something to prove you right. With a rice grain sized laser, the researchers have demonstrated that the single electron devices can become as small as possible. rice-grain-laser-quantum-computing. Yinyu Liu, first author of the study and a graduate student in Princeton's Department of Physics, holds a prototype of the device.​

Prof. Petta's laboratory had set the goal of getting double quantum dots to communicate with each other. As it was known to the team that the quantum dots could communicate through the entanglement of photons, they designed quantum dots that emit photons when single electrons jump from a higher to lower energy level in order to cross the double dot.princeton-university-rice-grain-sized-laser-research-jason-petta. The rice-grain sized laser or maser.This research was supported by the National Science Foundation, DARPA QuEST, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation and the Army Research Office.

The team has submitted a paper titled "Semiconductor double quantum dot micromaser" in the journal Science on Jan. 16, 2015. The paper dives deep into information about the fundamental interaction between light and the moving electrons. The interaction shows how the coherent microwave field is created and amplified. By understanding how to control these processors, the light sources of the future could be developed. In fact, Claire Gmachl, a pioneer in the field of semiconductor lasers, believes that the research work in such masers could impact sensing, medicine and many other aspects of modern life in a significant way.
​Source: Princeton University Research

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