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Limits on South Korea's rice production

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Despite an earlier statement by the Korean Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries to hold off unti 2005 to make changes in rice production, a high-ranking official from the MOAF said Sunday that it decided to advance plans. Since an income subsidy of up to 70% of rice price cuts will be introduced to rice famers next year, the government plans to compensate farmers by up to W3.5 million per hectare for not planting rice or planting another crop intead. The Ministry of Planning and Budget criticized the plan, estimating that it would increase the budget and have a limited effect on production. However, an MOAF official explained that it would cost W250 billion to store one million bales of rice and sell it after three years for alcohol production while the new plan would reduce this cost to W100 billion.

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