An increasingly unpopular government sticks to its worst and most costly policy – The Economist, August 10, 2013
…Naysayers warned that the scheme would be impossibly expensive. But Thaksin advisers said that withdrawing rice from world markets in this way would force up the price. Since Thailand was the world’s biggest exporter, the government would be able to cash in later by selling its stockpiles of grain at a profit.
So much for the weird theory. In practice, other countries have undercut Thailand, whose exports have tumbled (by about 4m tonnes, or a third, in the first full year of the subsidy scheme). India and Vietnam have overtaken Thailand as the biggest exporters. Unable to find buyers, the Thai government has been forced to stockpile 18m tonnes of the stuff and counting—equivalent to nearly half the annual global trade in rice…
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