PETALING JAYA: Malaysia has signed a contract to import a record 100,000 tonnes of rice from India.
The shipment is expected this month and next, industry officials told Reuters.
The news agency said this was a sign that trade relations between the countries were improving after a diplomatic spat.
The purchase this year is twice the average annual volume of rice Malaysia has imported from India over the last five years.
This comes as countries like Myanmar, Vietnam and Cambodia have placed temporary curbs on their rice exports during the Covid-19 crisis.
Reuters reported that Malaysia’s purchase will trim rice stockpiles in India, which is the world’s biggest exporter of the commodity.
“After a long time, Malaysia is making substantial purchases from India,” it quoted BV Krishna Rao, president of India’s Rice Exporters Association, as saying.
Rao and officials from three other firms expected Malaysia’s imports from India to increase to 200,000 tonnes this year with this latest deal.
Malaysia had been buying 53,000 tonnes annually on average from India over the past five years.
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