0257 GMT [Dow Jones] The progress of Thailand’s 2016/17 main-crop rice planting is significantly behind last year’s pace due to a lack of water, says the US Department of Agriculture in a note. “The Royal Irrigation Department still has not released irrigated water for rice farmers in order to preserve water supplies for household consumption.” It adds that reservoirs remain at critically low levels due to below normal precipitation although it anticipates releasing water for the main-rice crop on August 1, 2016. It says that the government is taking advantage of current tight domestic supply and aggressively selling its rice stocks. It says that rice stocks have declined to around 9 million metric tons. “It expects to issue a new tender for 2.2 million metric tons for export and 0.4 million metric tons for industrial uses on July 25, 2016.” (lucy.craymer[a]wsj.com; Twitter: [a]lucy_craymer)
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