Vietnam and Bangladesh on Tuesday decided to extend the memorandum of understanding (MoU) on rice trade, which will allow Vietnam to sell up to 1 million tonnes of rice to Bangladesh each year till 2022.
Vietnamese Industry and Trade Minister Tran Tuan Anh and Bangladeshi Food Minister Md Quamrul Islam signed the MoU for their respective parties in Hanoi, reported the Vietnam News Agency.
The MoU, inked on May 23 during the Bangladeshi minister’s visit, took only two weeks to be discussed and completed.
Immediately after signing the deal, Bangladesh requested for 300,000 tons of 5% broken rice, with a view to importing 500,000 tons of rice by the end of 2017.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, the Vietnamese minister expressed hope that Minister Quamrul Islam’s successful visit would foster greater friendship and a stronger bilateral partnership between the two countries.
This is not the first time that Bangladesh has signed an MoU for the import of rice from Vietnam.
The deal was originally signed on April 18, 2011, and Vietnam subsequently sold over 300,000 tons of rice to Bangladesh in 2011 and 2012. The deal was not renewed as Bangladesh was later able to generate sufficient rice to meet its own demand.
However, natural disasters in Bangladesh over the last two years have severely curtailed domestic rice production, resulting in a shortage for domestic consumers.