Rice exporting countries: The countries you should know about

Rice is now a staple food for many people around the world, especially in Asia and African countries. With developing production and techniques, rice exporting countries are now exploiting a lot from this market.

Top rice exporting countries: India

Among rice exporting countries, India is regarded as the number one rice exporting country in terms of volume and value. With its mass rice production capacity, 50% of the world’s wholesale rice volume is from India. Currently, Indian export rice costs from $350 to $370 per tonnes. Some countries in the Middle East such as Saudi Arabia, Iran, UAE, Iraq, and Kuwait are major import destinations of Indian basmati rice.

Related to geographical distance, India is right next to one of the world’s biggest rice importers like Bangladesh,  West Asian, and African countries. Therefore, transportation costs are often reasonable, especially during the epidemic situation when the cost of sea freight transportation increases in 2021. The stability of the Indian market lies in the exceeding rice production, standing at approximately 50 million tons/year, hence supplying not only domestic consumers but also export. For example, the India Gate Rice brand is one of the most popular brands exporting basmati rice in India. 

Top rice exporting countries: Vietnam

Since 2009, Vietnamese rice export volume has reached 4 million tons annually, reaching a peak at 8 million tons in 2012. In 2020, Vietnam exported 6.25 million tons of rice, equivalent to 3.12 billion USD. Compared to 2019, 2020 rice exports went down by 1.8% in quantity but increased by 11.2% in value. The overall trend in Vietnam is reducing in export volume but increasing in value, focusing on high-end rice supply chains. Vietnamese rice witnessed a 19.1% increase in export price, reaching $547 per tonne.

The Mekong Delta is the main rice-growing area in Vietnam, yielding 25.2 million tons from 2018 to 2019. This region is also the homeland of many famous rice varieties such as ST line rice.

Top rice exporting countries: Thailand

Thailand is the third-largest rice exporting country when it comes to output but second in value. Thailand used to be the world’s biggest rice exporter but was taken over by India in 2012. Thailand is known as the largest supplier of jasmine rice with 1.45 million tonnes exported annually.

33% of Thai rice exported is to the United States. Thailand also provides rice to China, Hong Kong, Canada, and Singapore.

Rice majorly grows in many regions in Thailand, especially in the Northeast. Ubon Ratchathani Province is the leading rice producer in Thailand and high quality Jasmine rice Thai is considered the best rice in Thailand. 


Jasmine rice Thai

Top rice exporting countries: Pakistan

Pakistan is a major rice exporting nation of basmati and non-basmati rice. Pakistani basmati rice has the advantage of a high value for export so its price is double that of non-basmati rice. Nevertheless, none-basmati rice makes up 75-80% of Pakistan’s total rice export. Sindh is the leading rice producer from Pakistan, accounting for 39% of the nation’s total rice production volume. The importing markets of Pakistani basmati rice are the Middle East and the EU

Pakistan has an advantage in terms of cultivating non-basmati rice. Pakistan’s main crop is in September, a month earlier than other rice exporting countries. Hence, during this period, the prices of Pakistani rice for export will be more competitive.

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