Machines will be provided for farmers to help them harvest rice crops by year’s end. (Bangkok Post file photo)

The Commerce Ministry will help provide farmers with sufficient harvest machines at a reasonable cost in November-December to gather all rice crops in time. This year’s rice prices are expected to set a record , said acting government spokesman Buddhipongse Punnakanta on Sunday.

Mr Buddhipongse said with the availability of harvesting machines, farmers will be able to harvest crops in time to maintain high quality and command high prices.

“Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha believes this year’s rice prices are likely to be higher than last year’s. For example, the hom mali fragrant paddy is expected to fetch between 16,000-17,000 baht per tonne. The price may be as high as 18,000 baht per tonne in some areas,” he said.

Mr Buddhipongse said prices of other kinds of rice crops will also be high.

Private operators of harvesting machines will also be allowed to provide a similar service at the lowest possible rate, he added.

“The prime minister has instructed all agencies concerned to provide knowledge and promote understanding among farmers about sustainable methods of cultivation in order to make a year-round income,” Mr Buddhipongse said.

News Reporter

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