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S Korea to Impose Tariffs on Rice Imports

27 May 2011

SOUTH KOREA- The South Korean government has decided to pursue an early imposition of tariffs on rice imports in a bid to deal with its growing rice reserves, local media reported Tuesday.

The Ministry for Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Agriculture is seeking to introduce tariffs on rice imports starting next year a plan initially scheduled for 2015 as a way of controlling the amount of rice imports into the country, according to Yonhap News Agency.

South Korea has been importing a set amount of rice under the Minimum Market Access arrangement since 1995, but for the last few years, an increase in output and a decrease in consumption have destabilized the country's rice market.

The MMA arrangement requires South Korea to import an additional 20,000 tons of rice each year.

The ministry said that policymakers are weighing the pros and cons of imposing tariffs on rice imports, although no detailed plans have been drawn up to discontinue the present policy of regulating rice imports, said Yonhap News Agency.

TheCropSite News Desk

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